The past is such an interesting thing. It’s a concept we’ve come up with to better recognize change; the changes in our lives, in what we look like, in where we go and what we achieve. We remember and honor that past in our memories, moments, glimpses of our lives hung like photographs to the wall in a gallery room.
So much of my wall is filled with pictures of you and the memories we both share. I imagine the room as very bright, very lived-in, with a high ceiling and high windows letting in a constant morning, sunlight on occasion highlighting our time joking in the kitchen at all hours, recording funny videos, making forts out of any and all blankets we could find, singing along to VeggieTales and Disney hits.
And though there is a section of that wall veiled in shadow – the hard times, the times we fought, the times we were both crying – I am so proud of the person in that wall and who you have become and every single moment we spent together.
My eyes drift from snapshot to snapshot, each one hung in a different frame and different place, taking up the entire space. I can imagine myself lifting a finger and running it along the base of one in particular. A random picture of us at Hillside, the cold creeping in through the baseboards and thin windows, but us asleep in our sleeping bags, together. Talking. Sharing. Imagining.
In another photograph, we’re on the couch, freaking out over the latest TV show, shouting in amazement like we’re at a football game, snacks spilling, hands in the air.
I turn my head, spinning in the room, feet scuffing the wooden floor. We’re riding our bikes, I skid, and you’re calling Mom frantically. You’re showing me makeup for the first time. We’re bickering in the bathroom. I sit with you can your friends at lunch. We had that awful time at Friendly’s after watching a movie. We’re at ballet class. We’re going Trick-or-Treating. We’re in the car with Dad on our way to Nova Scotia. We’re at Disney. We’re making up silly voices (like Moffat’s mom!). We’re having random dance parties. We’re having sleepovers in each other’s room. I hear a chuckle reverberate in the gallery, and realize it is mine. We’re now yelling at each other to get out, shoo, stop taking each other’s things!
Out of all of the people in my life, I think you have been the one to influence me the most. You always saw something bright in me. You kept me on track. You reined me in. And, even though our personalities are so very different (and I do so regret to have brought you so much strife), we are so similar. There is no one I would rather be as close to than you. And, I’m sorry for never really relating that to you well.
We went through a lot of crap in our lives, plain and simple. We both handled that differently. But we both came out of it. And there was so much more happiness and light than there was shadow.
When I am loud, you are quietly grasping my arm and forcing me down from my pedestal. Where I am lazy, you are determined. I am so excited to see who you become! You have so much potential – your effort and drive never fails to astound me, day after day. That will most certainly be an advantage in college and beyond.
As I turn around once more, I see that the colors streaming in through the windows have shifted, darkening to deep orange, pink, and a velvety purple. But if I crane my neck, I also see that there is so much more of that wall, waiting to be filled with even more memories.
You are my sister. Nothing is ever going to change that. Please know as you start this new chapter, new volume in your life, that I did, do, and will always love you. And I’ll be there, whenever you need me. I promise.
I have no doubt that your future will be bright; there are no limits to what you can do, if only you once realize that! Have faith in who you are, have faith in who God has created!
Try hard, work hard, think hard. But have fun! Realize that one moment in time can feel like it is everything, but know also that the one moment does not define your life. It is the whole book, prologue and back cover, that makes the story, not just a sentence. Your life is yours, and that in itself is something amazing. The world is waiting…
And I’ll be there when you call.