Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Oh, Sister: Thank Goodness for Siblings

All this week National Public Radio has been doing a series on siblings and sibling relationships. I've really enjoyed listening to these segments. As an only child, I often find myself baffled by the interactions of siblings, especially my own two sons. And I'm fascinated by birth order. Am I more like a baby or a first-born seeing as how I am both? And what about twins and the siblings of twins? How does birth order work for them? It's all endlessly fascinating to me, but at the end of the day, I still feel like I've missed out on one of the most amazing relationships in the world by not having a sibling.

When I see my girlfriends going off to do things with their sisters, like shopping or baking during the holidays, I always feel a pang of envy. How lucky are they! As I child I was addicted to the Trixie Belden books. I longed to have a big family like Trixie's with a wise and sensible older brother to look out for me like Trixie's older brother Brian.

In reality, I was very lonely as a child, so when it came time for us to decide whether or not we wanted an only, in my heart the decision was already made. Yes, by having an only we could give him much more in terms of material possessions and opportunities in life. But what would all that be worth if our son walked through life all alone, without the ties that a sibling can give you.

I don't know that anything can compare to the shared experience siblings, especially those who are close in age, have.

My father chose not to be a part of my life and unless he's dead, he's out there. Somewhere. And somewhere out there, I most likely have siblings. Or half-siblings. Sisters or brothers who might look like me. Think like me. Sound like me. But unlike me, I hope they had, not only the love of our father and their mother, but the love of each other.

If you have a sibling, this Thanksgiving let them know how much they mean to you. If you're not close, work a little harder to get to know them. Once your parents are gone, you will only ever truly have each other and you'll be thankful then to have someone who shares the same memories and life experiences as you. Someone who can always help you remember.


mensajes claro said...

Going out with siblings for shopping is great , So you can learn some likes about each other.

Sarah said...

So beautifully written. I am fascinated by birth order and I also LOVED reading Trixie Belden as a girl :)

DogwoodGirl said...

Very touching post. My sister is the most important person in my world, next to my children and husband. What we have is irreplaceable and indescribable.

And I love Trix, too.