Not everyone is so lucky to have a big sister like mine. Our sisterhood is somewhat unique as there is such a big difference in our ages. Tracey is 12 years older than me. Yep, I was a surprise baby (according to my mother she always wanted another baby, just never expected to have one!).
Despite how much we bickered – “You can’t tell me what to do – you’re not Mom!” was one of my favourite things to tell her – she was pretty much my favourite person in the world. I idolized her. I always wanted to be a part of whatever she was doing, wanted to play in her room, hang out with her friends, etc. I drove her nuts. Looking back, I realize how much patience she actually had with me. She did include me in a lot of things – not that I think she had much choice sometimes. She took me to the mall with her friends (where they encouraged me to run up to her yelling “Mommy!”, causing her to receive many dirty looks), she played games with me, she occasionally bought me things (I have a journal entry stating “Today was great! Tracey bought me a magazine!”), she took me to movies, and she would recruit me as her accomplice in borrowing and listening to my brother’s records (he’s 5 years older than her and didn’t want her touching any of his things).
She married my brother-in-law, Joe, and moved out when I was twelve. They’d been together since I was four, so I was pretty excited, especially as I got to be a bridesmaid again (I’d been a bridesmaid for my brother’s wedding 3 years earlier). During the wedding reception it really hit me that she wasn’t going to be living in the same house as me anymore. I don’t remember what happened very well, but I know I had a meltdown. How could she just leave me? How dare Joe take her away?
It took time, but eventually I got over it. Besides, her moving out meant that I could have her room (it was the only bedroom in the house that had a phone jack – how cool was that?). Life went on. Despite her no longer living at home, I talked to her a lot. She was the person I called to talk to about things – Mom & Dad, boys, etc. She was always there for me.
She still is. When I’m upset about something she’s one of the first people I turn to. When planning my wedding I never gave a second thought to who I wanted as my maid of honour. She was the first person (after Chris of course) I told when I thought I was pregnant. When I need advice about motherhood, I call her. She’s always there to listen and to give whatever advice or encouragement I may need.
She is more than just a sister – she’s my best friend and I’m so grateful to have her in my life.