i have two memories of being an only child.
the first is a very short snippet of my 2nd birthday party. i remember sitting on the floor, my cousin josh nearby, attempting to play with the red wagon and teddy bear i had been given. i can recall turning my head and seeing my mom in the dining room. her pregnant belly was beginning to show.
the second is of accompanying her to an ultrasound. her doctor let me stand on a foot stool and wipe the gel off her big belly. she must have been about 8 months, because i remember how large and round she looked.
i don't remember realizing that i was going to be a sister. i'm not 100% sure i knew what it entailed. but then it happened. i was jolted from a dead sleep on October 11th, 1988-- and marched across the street in my little ruffled nightgown-- to stay the night at my aunt's house. my parents were going to the hospital. not anticipating my overnight stay elsewhere, my mom had very hastily thrown all my little belongings in a hard suitcase that said "Goin' to Grandma's". the next morning, i obnoxiously jumped into my cousin's bed and demanded that she wake up. as she attempted to help me get dressed, she noted that my mom didn't pack me any socks. no socks? she forgot? it was my first indication that "i wasn't in kansas anymore". things were about to be different. and on October 12th at 5:13 AM, they most certainly were. for i now had a little sis.
of course i loved my sister. although rumor does have it that i begged to return her to the hospital in exchange for a kitten after about 2 weeks. but in hindsight, i can't imagine life without her. to have a sister is to have a perpetual playmate. confidant. partner in crime. and while it usually also means you have someone perpetually tattling on you as well---the good far out weigh the bad.
today my little sister turns 21. its kind of daunting to realize we're both adults now. how clearly is seems like yesterday we were playing little mermaid in the swimming pool, and staying up late giggling in each others rooms, and concocting adventures in the snow. leaves. grass. trees.
my sister is the most real person you'll ever meet. she'll tell you exactly how it is. even if you don't want to hear it. but she'll be there for you every step of the way while she does it. she's a gifted photographer. and listener. and make-up artist. and woman of God. she's a fabulous friend. and i'm so blessed that she's mine.
happy birthday, sho. i think i've finally forgiven you for breaking my favorite stencil :)