June 30, 2011

carried on my hip

When I was 8, I was playing out in the front yard with my little friend and she said to me, Guess how babies get into mommies tummies?
I squirmed around and said, Kissing?
She laughed like a perv and said, Blah, blah, blah. Blahbity, blah, blah.
I was horrified. I was sick.
THAT'S NOT TRUE, I bellowed.
Yes it is. My mom told me. So there. What's it even matter? She shrugged like, whatever.
THAT'S A SIN, I bellowed again.
Well then. All mommies and daddies are sinners. How could she be so nonchalant?
WE WERE ALL ADOPTED THEN! ALL SIX OF US!
Oh, Sunny Jane. Puh-leeze.
I really was sick. I kinda thought maybe what she said was true, and my little 8 year old mind was... wigging out.
So when her mom came and picked her up to go home, I crept into the house and went to Shelly.
Shelly was seventeen and basically like God in my eyes.
She also had frightfully permed hair and was busily spraying 5lbs of Rave hairspray on her big bangs when I came to tell her what was burdening my heart.
Shelly Belly... is what she said true? 
Shelly looked long and hard at her perm in the Home Interiors gold mirror with the gold lily climbing up the front of it.
She shook the can of Rave to see if there was any left.
There wasn't.
So she finally turned to me and said, It's true. But it's ok, Sunny Jane. It's the way God wants it to be. It's the way He made it.
I clung to the edge of the dresser and looked up into her big blue eyes and suddenly... it didn't matter anymore.
The tears cleared out of my eyes.
Because Shelly said it was ok, so it was.
She was my big sister, and I trusted her.

Sisters make circles of time, a completing of sentences and memories and laughter, the past curving into now and you both know how it all rolls.

A sister born friend, she turns all the inner worlds that won’t fit into words, into a deep knowing.

... swing her sister’s babe on her hip, a fluid extension of the love that flows through them both.

... hold the other end of line in enfolded prayer when her sister calls late, weeping over a heart that fell down a flight of love and shattered all silent.

... sisters, the shared childhood that never ends, the friendship that transcends. 

- Ann Voskamp, A Holy Experience

Dear Ann. I've been reading her stuff, and she took the words right outta my mouth.
Sisters are like that.
Friends may come and go. Spouses might wander and leave. But a sister is there for the duration.
Sisters have this fierce loyalty toward each other. This bonding of holding hands. A sister will cover you with her moma wings when you need her to.
My sisters have made my life sweeter. They're a blessing from God.
Sisters are God's way of saying, You'll always have someone on earth who is on your side.

Karen and Shelly. And ten pounds of Rave hairspray.

Me and Karen

Shelly n' me

Ah... Shelly's bangs were epic.

The bride and her sister

Karen, Jenny, and I

Abby of the blue, blue eyes.
And me, of the brown like poop eyes.

I've carried my sister's babies on my hip. I've felt that fluid extension of love flow from me to them.
I've called them, crying too hard to speak, and didn't need to tell them what was wrong. They knew without the words.
They've counted my grey hairs. And pulled them out if they were sticking up.
They've pulled me across the room by my ear. When I was a little brat.
They asked me to sleep by their bedroom door. Just in case there was an axe murderer, so he could get to me first.
They introduced me to Godiva chocolate. And created a demon.
We share clothes. We laugh at the babies. We text incessantly. We vent to each other. Cry on each other's shoulders.
We can't live without the other.

I've not only carried my sister's babies on my hip, my sisters have carried me on their hips.
Held tight, arms securely wrapped around me.
Sisters. Making things okay.