September 2009


It’s his shadow! My cat is chasing his shadow! How adorable and cartoon-like of him. Aww, bless him.

Our cat is currently darting back and forth in the living room, jumping up and batting at some invisible foe. I see two options:

1) My cat is crazy.

OR

2) There is an invisble phantom in our house.

If it’s the latter one, I sure hope he catches it.

In my last failed attempt to reinvigorate this blog, I mentioned that once I get out of the habit of blogging, it is very difficult to start again. Plus, now there is facebook, where one can mini-blog in sentence soundbites oh-so-easily. (And twitter, but I am apparently too old for that. I just can’t take on one more new technological communication tool.)

I can’t really keep up with facebook AND blogging … so I had basically given up on this project, thinking perhaps I would start again if something new and dramatic started in our life (like a baby, or an adoption, or, say, a move to the Congo).

Nothing particularly NEW and DRAMATIC is happening. But my older sister asked me to update my blog. And, a true product of my birthorder, I pretty much do what she tells me to do.

Here. I updated my blog.

Does this count? Happy now?

When I was little(r), I would consult my older sister for all things. For instance, when presented with unfamiliar food options, I would ask her first if I liked them. My parents tried to discourage this behavior, but I thought they were being unreasonable. I mean, my older sister KNEW if I would like something or not. So why take a risk on my own?

Thank you, sister, for protecting me from the dangers of a green bean.

At some point later in life, I developed my own sense of self.

I was together with my sisters last weekend, and somehow a story about Venus and Serena Williams kept coming up. My younger sister had heard or read an interview or book excerpt with Serena, in which she spoke of her love for her sister, Venus. She recounted one of their first tournaments as young girls. Venus won first place and a gold trophy. Serena came in 2nd or 3rd, with a silver or bronze. Serena was really disappointed. Venus noticed how sad she was and told her, “You know, I like silver (or bronze?) better anyway. Do you want to trade trophies?” They did and Serena says that gold trophy is one she is still proudest of today.

So, the funny part of the story for us was that my older sister — who is very competitive and the sportiest of us all by far — noted that this was all very nice, but that she would never do something like that. She would never be the sacrificial Venus sister. And silly Serena, to be proudest of “the one trophy she did not actually deserve.”

My older sister is not a “Here, you have my trophy” kind of person.

But both of my sisters (and my parents, of course) are wonderful, and I am really grateful for them. I’ve been reminded of my love and gratitude for my family again during some recent less-than-wonderful times  — which I could not have endured were it not for my sisters in my cheering section. When Ned broke his femur, my family — although far away — was on the case with phone calls, care packages and a weekend of care from my older sister and her husband. My sisters have been unrelentlessly supportive as I’ve dealt with my own set of (mysterious) health issues this past year. And when my grandmother died two weeks ago, it was my younger sister and I crying on the phone together at 1 a.m., my older sister and I standing together before my grandmother’s casket just before the funeral, and the three of us laughing hysterically (with the rest of my family) that night as we recounted some of our favorite moments with my grandparents.

When I’m murky on a childhood memories, my sisters can fill in the blanks. And when I forget myself, my sisters remember. Thank you.