Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The strange chemistry of sisterhood

Today was my sister's birthday. I must share with you a picture from what I think was her eighth birthday and remains my favorite of all of her birthday parties. I am the big sister you see. Those were the cutest little girls! Giggling and strutting about in their toilet paper filled bras imagining what it would feel like to have the real thing. Some sat with great poise and dignity while others sat like an old granny at a bus stop.

They are now all grown up. The picture is about 50 (48 my sister would insist on sparing her those other two years) years old. That little girl with her pinkie lifted in the middle beside the precious little boy whose feet do not even touch the floor (my brother) is my sister, the highly regarded cardiologist.

We grow old, we grow apart, but whatever happens there is still a special bond there. Two sisters giggling under the covers, touching somewhere during the night for comfort. Laden with heavy covers while the window air conditioner blows hard and keeps the room so cold the door sweats. Laughter. Tears. Harsh words. The shared memories of our parents no longer with us. Even when in Southern Gothic manner the fabric of the relationship frays, a hand reaches back and another automatically grasps it and once again the strange chemistry of sisterhood brings us home. To each other.

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