Everyday Uncommon

Of Birthdays and Sisters

Today is my big sister’s birthday.

I like birthdays. I enjoy celebrating them. I like making a fuss for the celebrators whenever I can. It’s my way of letting them know that I’m acknowledging their special day and that I’m grateful they were born.

Unfortunately, my sister is away and won’t be back until next week. Sure, we can meet up to celebrate then, but it’s not the same.

It’s different on many levels, I suppose. My way doesn’t necessarily match other people’s, even those related to me. I miss having a co-conspirator for such things, I  used to have one. In truth, I’m missing a former friend.

Speaking of which, another friend posted a link to this Huffington Post blog. Taking away the “divine” aspect of the piece, it had me thinking about what the author wrote.

“Friendship is probably the most valued of all relationships because a friend is totally our own choice… a friend is someone who speaks to our heart, someone with whom we feel a magnetic affinity… Friendship is the coming together of equals. Even if there is a difference in abilities, roles or positions, there is a vision of equality that does not allow any feeling of either superiority or inferiority. This equality of vision permits a complete acceptance of one another.”

I totally agree. Although I am torn by some other statements. Such as “Real friends can never divorce.” and “Friendship means availability. A friend is available at all times and never says ‘I don’t have time,’ ‘wait,’ ‘later,’ or  ‘don’t bother me now.’ When there is need, a friend rushes to be there.”

First, I suppose there is something to real friends remaining friends through thick and thin, and through an assortment of trials. I remained friends with my former bestie for a long time. We forgave each other our shortcomings and managed to mend whatever difficulties our friendship faced—until we couldn’t; or rather, until I couldn’t. As much as I loved her, there were some things I could not overcome. I figured that if I could not feel secure in our friendship anymore and if my trust is so easily set aside, then what’s the point?

As for “availability,” that’s just silly and I totally disagree. Of course I make time for my friends, and they for me; but no one is available all the time! That’s not a friend, that’s a paid servant or a robot. Of course it’s a given that a friend of mine in need can count on me. My former best friend knew it. If she called, I’d come charging and with the cavalry too; and, (back then) I knew that if I really and truly needed her, she’s drop everything and come to my aid. That’s just how I thought real friends were supposed to be.

As much as I miss having a best friend (before things went bad, naturally), I’m grateful to have another kind of best friend—my sister. While it’s a very different relationship, there are similarities. I was lucky enough to be born to a nice family, a good family. My siblings are, for the most part, quite decent. My parents too, I can’t really complain about. But my sister is special because she is a kindhearted person. If you take a minute and think about how rare kindness is these days, you’ll understand how lucky I am.

So, even though she’s not around at the moment, I’d like to take this opportunity to declare how blessed I am to have her—which she’ll never hear of or else I shall deny it. And, good thing too that I’m fond of stretching out special occasions, we’ll be having a birthday week or whatever, until the celebrator finally arrives and can party with the rest of us.

Although we were never quite little…

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