I recently came back from Ottawa where I spent the weekend visiting my sister, while my husband held down the fort. It was a perfect weekend. Two sisters sharing pajama coffee chats, shopping, walking by the river, visiting the Farmer’s Market, trying new recipes, going to the pub, and falling asleep at home watching movies (this may be a genetic trait.)
We treasure the relationship we have with each other now, but we only really became friends when my sister moved out and we were living under separate roofs. That’s when we decided to live together – back under the same roof, but by choice this time! When we first shared an apartment we moved almost everything by subway because neither of us had a car. When we moved to a bigger place, our dining room table was a picnic table that we had delivered from a hardware store.
Our childhood memories include weathering our mom’s different cooking phases (we still cringe over the homemade yogurt phase) and wearing beautiful matching Easter outfits she had made, complete with hats and gloves. We washed and dried dinner dishes while singing “Edelweiss” from The Sound of Music. As sisters, we suffered the same awful haircuts as our mom tried to even out our bangs with scotch tape and scissors, until we basically had no bangs at all. My sister taught me how to put on mascara and helped fill in the blanks for things that weren’t covered in the, “On Becoming a Woman” book that Aunt Char gave me.
And today, when I need advice or someone to vent to, my sister is always there for me. I value her insight and she knows exactly what to say to talk me off a ledge during a crisis (real or imagined). She’s always a few parenting steps ahead of me as her daughters are older, and she’s generous with her encouragement and wisdom. She’s one of the first people I call when I have exciting or terrible news to share. As sisters we’ve celebrated births (I was even in the delivery room when my niece was born) and mourned the loss of loved ones. We’re in a race to see who turns into our mother first (my sister’s winning because she’s organized and loves ironing).
I often wonder what kind of relationship my daughters will have with each other when they've outgrown their sibling rivalry and are no longer arguing about borrowed clothes and whose turn it is to set the table. Will they reminisce about their childhood years and family vacations? I wonder if they’ll ever be roommates by choice. Maybe they’ll have their own families and live right next door to each other, which has always been a dream for my sister and me. Or maybe they’ll live in separate cities, knowing their sister is just a phone call away, and they’ll get together to share fantastic weekends as sisters and friends.
Do you have sisters? What are some of your favourite memories of the bond between sisters?
About the Author:
Karen Pearson is one of the friendly voices you’ll hear on the other end of the phone when calling Customer Service at Mabel’s Labels. She enjoys writing about her family, which includes a husband, 3 kids and a rescue dog from Greece.