Who’s my big sister?
She’s the Bimmy to my Dodo. She’s the Yaaallloow! to my Purrrpllle! She’s the reason I wear black socks with my black pants and shoes now like a grown up, and the reason I change my kitchen sponges out frequently. She was the escape driver that snuck me out of the house before I could drive, and the one who made sure I got home safely before mom and dad woke up. The one who slept on the bunk above me. The one who was nice enough to have birthdays so we could get matchy dresses. She who shared books and clothes and stories with me. Helped me fall asleep when I couldn’t. Can help me belt out at least forty random camp songs that make no sense and still, a thousand years later, can do the hand movements to said songs.
Thanks to my big sister I had really short, choppy bangs when I was three. It’s okay, when I was eight I threw up all over us while she was asleep on the trundle bed below me.
When she was 15, and I was 12 or 13, we went to a neighborhood church party at a local school park. Her and I are equal parts socially awkward, so we wandered off and found ourselves playing on the teeter totter. Hands down, best memory I have of her. I love to make her laugh, love it. She can be in the worst mood ever, and I can make her bust up; it’s a challenge, but one I enjoy immensely. We were on this teeter totter and I had her laughing so hard that she peed her pants. Like it was dripping down her legs and off her shoes. I had to take her to the car, return to the party and get her food, and pretty much do her heart’s desires for the rest of the evening. Totally worth it.
Together we enjoyed summer trips to stay at grandma and grandpa’s, once shaving the bottom couple of inches at the base of our heads secretly while staying on one of said trips. We shared our first concert, New Kids on the Block, when we were 13 and 11. We rode bikes together, practiced making crazy faces together, decorated our walls with boy band posters. We scoured the entire backyard of our desert home with shovels looking for her Ken doll’s head after our older brother stole it and hid it. She comforted me when our parents were fighting and I was too young to understand things. We got our ears pierced for the first time together. We enjoyed chicken pox together. We got matchy 80s perms.
We have so many inside jokes, no one could ever understand us fully. She’s been my cheerleader and my defender. She watched as other “best friends” walked in and out of my life, and was still there to be my BFF when I didn’t deserve it.
She burned her hand on the curling iron, so I didn’t have to learn that one myself. She listens to me when my crazy track is playing its ceaseless loop through my head, and somehow, without trying, calms it down. She knows how to make me feel better, even if we’re just comparing our dry and cracked feet.
Two and a half years always seemed like a giant canyon to cross, that I would never be old enough, cool enough, mature enough, to be like her. Now that age difference means nothing, except for these amazing years when she’s crossing her own canyon to the next decade (ouch, 40!!!).
We bathed together, swam together, water skied together. Learned to fish together, shoot guns together, and got to alternate driving grandpa’s truck at the dump together. Ate together, washed dishes together. Grated cheese together, and sifted flour for weevils side by side. It’s like having a built-in best friend, whether we wanted one or not. My cohort, my ally, my automatic “let’s go kick his ass” buddy.
I carry thirty year old guilt about blabbering how she’d started her period to the neighborhood boys, before I knew what a period was and why it wouldn’t be cool to tell them. I mean, it only took a few minutes to learn I shouldn’t do that, but by then it was too late. I have hurt her way too many times to count, and somehow, somehow, she is always right there.
Who could live with me during those middle school years and still love me? Who would let me and my family of four move in with them for a year? And who would want to then come live with us in our new home for another two years?
I don’t think there’s anyone in my life that knows me as well as she does. I tell her anything, everything.
She likes black and red, I like blue and green. I like blue Dawn soap and she hates it. I read and watch romantic comedies over and over and over. She prefers non-fiction, documentaries, and dramas, and has rarely seen a movie more than once. She is wonderfully patient and kind with my girls, and enjoys spending quality time with them. She hand-picks books for my picky 9 year old, orders them and picks them up from the library… returns them. I am the kind of aunt that will give a birthday card with a $20 bill, if I remember to pick one up and swing by the ATM.
She is wicked, wicked smart. Kind, empathetic, more concerned for everyone else around her than about herself. I am jealous of her bigger brown eyes than mine. I am jealous of the way the family sees her as the selfless and kind-hearted one. I love the way she loves our family.
We are so similar, and have so much in common, that it’s hard to believe we are so opposite. I greatly admire her, am in awe of all the wonderful traits she possesses. She is gentle, compassionate, wise, and strong. She makes this world a better place for everyone that crosses her path, and luckily for me, she lets very few people into her inner circle. Heck, even her outer circle.
I love my Bitch Bim, with all my heart, with all my Dodoness, with all my everything.
Happy birthday big sister. I’ll text you later.