I feel like I should preface this one by saying something to the effect of, “I’m writing on personal experience, please take no offense. I’m sure if you have a brother he’s lovely. I’m sure if you have only boys, they are delightful. I’m sure if you have a boy and a girl that they are darling together. I’m sure if you have two boys and a girl that they are a perfect trio.” But I have none of those those things (and by things, I mean people). I am one in a pair of sisters. I have three nieces. I have given birth to two girls.
I know girls.
I know sisters.
And sisters are for real.
I told Kyle long before the baby making game, that should we ever have a girl – we would have babies until she got a sister. I had a sister growing up (she’s still alive, actually), and I treasure her now more than I ever have. Actually, growing up, I didn’t know that I treasured her at all (most days I swore I didn’t), but I did. I did because I spied on her. I did because I raided her closet. I did because I kept her secrets from mom and dad. I did because I wanted her friends to be my friends. I did because, whether I would ever admit it or not, everything she did or touched was golden to me. Maybe that’s just how the bigger siblings operate, but as we’ve gone through more and more life together, I know now more than ever how special sisters are.
Maybe I know now how special sisters are not because I’m living it, but because I’m watching it. Thanks to two pregnancies resulting in two pink little packages, I get to watch this sister game unfold before my very eyes – and you guys – it’s a sight to behold. Leah is the ultimate big sister.
I like to think that Kyle and I had some sort of hand in preparing Leah for sisterhood. That somehow we have done all the right things and said all the right things to prepare her to love and care for Quinn. But I know that we have had very little to do with that. God knitted her tiny little heart with so much love and compassion that we would have had to try really really hard to fail at this. Leah has loved Quinn from the second she knew there was a baby in my belly, through no effort of ours. We cannot force the relationship that they have. When Quinn cried the other day, Leah’s response was, “maybe she needs me to kiss her head, mama.” I mean, she can’t be serious. I thought my sister only started liking me when I stopped annoying her at every turn (around 18). Turns out, it probably started much sooner than I ever knew.
I’m the little sister. And I love to watch Quinn behave as the little sister. Glorifying everything Leah does with a smile as wide as the world. To me, Leah can be so annoying sometimes! She makes weird sounds, and says weird things, and just acts like a weirdo most of the time – but then I watch Quinn watch her – and she sees nothing weird at all. She sees who she wants to be someday, whether she knows it yet or not. She looks at Leah with such a glisten in her eye – already! She follows her around like it’s her job. I get to see her take on this role of little sister and I know what she’s feeling.
Because sisters are for real.
Leah wipes her nose, she brings me diapers, she picks her clothes, she kisses her boo-boos, she feeds her, brushes her teeth, washes her, plays with her, tickles her, talks to her, reads to her, sings to her, makes her laugh, and entertains her for the better part of every single day. Somedays, what I can’t seem to give a fussy Quinn, Leah can. She worries about her when she goes to the doctor, and misses her while she’s at school. They have tea parties and dance parties.They can fill a day, these two. And I’m not saying we don’t have the, “Quinn, I was playing with that!” Because, Lord knows we do, but we have so much of the other side of it that it drowns out the negative.
But the ultimate sister moment: Leah and Quinn were playing in the dining room, Leah was rambling to her about God knows what. All of a sudden I hear,
“what do you wanna talk about Quinnie? Jesus? Jesus loves us.”
You could have mopped the floor with the puddle of mush I became in that moment. Leah is going to teach her all kinds of good (and some bad) – but at three years old to teach her that Jesus loves her. My goodness. Maybe the most important thing I’ll ever want either of them to know. And there will be times maybe Quinn doesn’t believe that. And there will be times maybe Quinn won’t believe me when I say it. But if her big sister says it – well – we know how that goes. God bless the heart of a child.
And a sister.