I adore my big brother… but I’ve been sour for 38 years that I don’t have a sister. Even as we speak, my daughter has amazing brothers, but she doesn’t have a sister. It doesn’t sit well with me. I know I sound petty but it’s true; I want her to have a sister.
But that’s not what this post is about!
This post is about the way God made that lack-of-a-sister situation up to me.
God gave me three absolutely amazing sisters by marriage!
I truly hit the in-law jackpot. It’s been 18 years of sisters (in-law, but I just call them “sisters”) and I still think, on a very regular basis, how blessed I am to have these women in my life. So let’s take a moment and hear it loud and grateful for the sisters (in-law)!
These human wedding presents come in many forms and these three are mine all mine:
The Sister-in-Law my Brother Married.
My brother’s wife is not much older than me, and I can hardly remember life before her. They got married young and I have lived more of my life with her than without. Not only is she perfect for him, but she is perfect for our family. I hate that she lives so far away because I long for all the fun we could have raising our babies together. I love that she understands “my side of the family” and she loves my husband and kids so well. She just loves everyone SO WELL. She is always up for adventures and tells the greatest stories. She is the best nurse I have ever known, and she is one of the most compassionate and nurturing people in my life. She is the kind of person who put her life on hold, traveling south for several weeks, to help us through multiple surgeries after my son was born. She answers midnight text messages about strange rashes, keeps a Rolodex of recipes in her head – always ready to feed a crowd – and she always goes way overboard with Christmas gifts. She’s always a little extra, keeps it real and keeps us laughing. I am grateful beyond words to have her as my sister and so thankful for the one-thousand ways she makes our family better.
The Single Sister-in-Law.
My “little” sister-in-law lives in Florida. She is my kid’s “nanny” and she is as genuine, honest and empowering as it gets. She is an excellent listener, always open-minded, always considerate of others and I feel like she truly gets me and loves me for who I am. And also, she’s single. Her singleness works to our benefit, because she makes all her own rules in life! She can travel home for a visit whenever she pleases and we can always go crash at her place. Speaking of her place, did I mention she lives in South Florida? On the beach? Right. So while we hate that she’s far away, we love that any trip to see her is a vacation. Speaking of vacation, sometimes she comes on ours. Taking her to Disney with us was one of the best decisions we ever made. She knew all the secrets, had all the energy, and she always brings the fun! She is the kind of person who buys my favorite toilet paper and coffee creamer before I come to visit – just because. She doesn’t have children of her own so she puts all her energy into her nieces and nephews, yet still always has time to be a great friend to me. So yeah, having a single sister, I highly recommend it!
The Sister-in-Law Next Door.
Well, she isn’t actually next door but she’s pretty close, and frankly, I love it that way. This is the sister I have the blessing of doing daily life with. She’s the very first friend I made when I moved to New Orleans, and she remains a very best friend today. We get to raise our kids together and plan all the festivities together. We get to do holidays and beach days, Saints games and school events. We get to help each other out (hello carpool!), have all the fun and journey through the hard times together. We have a never-ending list of things to talk about and it helps that she’s a counselor, so her listening skills are on point and her advice is solid. She’s the kind of person who knows me well enough to know my intentions, anticipate my struggles and recognize my fears. Half the time, she knows what I’m thinking or feeling, even before I do. We challenge each other, laugh, chill and grow together. I truly love doing life with her, deeply value our relationship and cannot imagine my days without her in them.
So what I mean is… I would choose them even if I wasn’t stuck with them.
Because of these girls, I have years of conversations, memories and laughter burned into my heart. I have a built-in support system and I always have a great friend by my side. It doesn’t hurt that they can all match my coffee habit, mug for mug. I may not have gotten a sister by birth, but with sisters like mine, I feel overwhelmed with gratitude. They are truly, three of the best friends a girl could ask for; the opportunity to call them family is just the icing on the cake!