Yesterday was your birthday, and the first since you were born that I didn’t buy you a card and presents, since you cut all the ties that bound us together as sisters.
It’s funny how, even now, I remember with such clarity the day you were born. It was a Mother’s Day and I was so excited that my little sister had arrived. When they brought you home from the hospital, you were a wild-looking little thing, with dark hair sprouting all over your head. But I still remember your intense little eyes with long eyelashes, appearing to study the world like a mini professor. Daddy said you looked like a little monkey, but I think he just said that to make me mad. Grammy called you her little Indian princess. And all ll I felt was… love at first sight.
Through the years, you were my “little buddy,” constantly toddling behind me asking, “Whatcha doing?” and “Where are you going?” You used to beg me to put makeup on you and to polish your finger and toenails, knowing I was putty in your hands. I’d often find you out squatting in the yard, in your little shorts, crop top and long trademark braids, administering to a family of web worms you had discovered. You’d pull me over and proceed to point out each one, telling me its name. You were an absolute delight to me and our closeness grew from there through your teenage years and on into womanhood.
We had such a unique and precious bond, reinforced yearly by our “sister trips” to New Mexico. We had our regular haunts there – Gila Bend National Park, the White Sands desert, Smokey the Bear’s birthplace for you and the UFO Museum at Roswell for me. What times we had! We could literally finish each other’s sentences and crack each other up with merely a look or roll of the eyes. We were not only sisters, but friends… and you threw it all away.
But, you know what?
You may be able to forget all those times I helped you through homework and heartache.
You might revoke all those promises you made to me saying, “I’ve got your back, no matter what.”
You might try to negate all the loving things I did for you, too numerous to count.
You might nullify our bond, deny our sistership, and withdraw every scrap of love and loyalty you once had for me, but…
You can never, ever, erase all the memories I have of being your big sister, laughing with you, wiping your tears and holding you close to my heart.
Those are mine, and they always will be.