Today is a special day because it is my sister’s (Julia’s) 16th birthday. 16 is a very important birthday. On my 16th birthday I “got commenced” from Miss Porter’s School (a boarding school in my town) and decided that very day that I wasn’t going back. I don’t think anything quite so traumatic has occurred for Julia yet today, but she did get an 100 on her History quiz which put her in very good spirits.
My mom already wrote a lengthy, extremely adorable blog post in Julia’s honor on her blog so I will touch less on Julia growing up throughout the years, as Mom did, and more on… eh, I’m not really sure. But I promise they aren’t the same!
I share a room with Julia. Although this can, at times, be slightly frustrating, it’s also rewarding. Julia is my best friend. We share all of our clothes and I can honestly tell her anything (the two prerequisites for a best friend). I’m not going to lie and say that I can tell her anything without her judging me because I can rarely make it through the telling of a story that I have previously deemed extremely serious and utterly urgent without her exploding into giggles. Or cackles. I would actually describe them as cackling-giggle-fits of disbelief. For the most part, however, her little outbursts serve me good and help me realize how obscure and silly my problems sound as I say them aloud. Julia has always known how to put me in my place (and I mean that in the best way possible).
When I was younger, I used to be very jealous of Julia. When I was in fourth grade and she was in second, she waltzed into my orchestra class one day, viola in hand, because the elementary school orchestra teacher viewed her as too gifted to be with not only her age group, but the grade above her as well, so he had placed her in my orchestra class. With my friends. I was not too happy. And then, in fifth grade, I didn’t make the travel soccer team and, when she was in third grade, Julia did. I had not yet accepted the fact that stellar athlete of the family was not at all my role to fill, and was more than a little upset by this situation. Yet again, Julia had outdone me.
It wasn’t until I was in seventh grade that I began to stop trying to view Julia as the younger, inferior sister I had wanted her to be and instead as my equal. It was in seventh grade that I realized that we both had our own separate talents and it was the point of sisters to cheer each other on as equals and as friends, rather than as solely competitors. I was the artsy thespian and she was the super-smart athlete and we are, to this day, each other’s biggest supporters.
This post has been all about Julia, as it should have been since today is her day, but I don’t want to leave my other sisters out of the picture. The four of us are closer than a lot of other sisters I know and I take pride in our friendships. I know that in twenty years we are going to be the four best friends that share all of their awesome clothing and shoes and makeup and secrets, and I honestly could not be much more excited. We each have our own talents and we each love and respect one another, all things that I’m not sure every sister could say about the other.
Julia, I am beyond lucky to have you as my younger sister and I hope that the rest of your 16th birthday is as incredible as you would have wanted.