Time is ticking. Life is beginning to change, slowly but surely. I'd compare the change to the changing of leaves and be very poetic, but here in Ohio I find that one day I look out the window to see green leaves and then the next they are gold and when I blink, it's snowing.
Regardless, my sister Larissa is now an entire continent away from me. She took a plane to Brazil on August 2 and will return mid December.
|My parents and I dropping her off at the airport|
I'm happy to report that I kept the crying to a minimum; contrary to popular predictions. My mother was also able to keep it together and I was very proud of her for that.
This is the first time that anyone of us has left the country...and for the longest period of time. We do have Skype and other such technologies to keep in touch, but it is so different being unable to send her a text or call her for trivial things. Her absence is and will be more prominent at family get-togethers and parties, but I miss her most for the little things. I can't whisper funny comments into her ear that only she would understand. I can't ask her if my outfit combination looks funny. I can't listen to country music and sing along with her in funny voices. I can't complain about how dirty our room is and then badger her until she cleans it...weeks later.
But I don't pity myself. I am so excited for her. She is in a new country, learning a new language and even practicing her teaching in English schools! This is such a great opportunity and I'm proud of her.
The fact that I am diligently organizing a collection of framed pictures to take to Ashland and that my sister has left is evoking old thoughts and feelings. I remember having tea parties with her and sipping the air out of our plastic teacups because water was becoming "too much of a mess". She would take me by the hand and lead me this way and that; to beauty salons, school, restaurants, and other places of pretend that were all owned and operated by her. She taught me how to read, braid my hair, and do multiplication. She was practicing for her career before she even knew what a career was. Larissa was born to lead, to teach. She knew that she was meant to touch the lives of other children. She always told me how she worried about leaving a good impression on her students because they may not remember all of the lessons, but they will remember her. I admired her for that. To Larissa, it's not about formulas and equations. It's about the people.
To have such a great sister and role model is uplifting and yet can be simultaneously discomforting. She sets a great example of what can be achieved with confidence and hard work, yet I wonder if I can compare. She is so sure of what she wants and of what her capabilities are. I, on the other hand, am not.
I realize that we are not the same person and that I will find my niche (eventually). But will my siblings ever look up to me and think, "Wow. I want to be like her." as I so often did to Larissa? Maybe. They don't have to want to be me. I couldn't imagine all of my siblings sitting around reading and basking in the wonders of writing. That would be frightening. I suppose that the best I can do is show them that doing your best is worthwhile and that not fitting one person's description of greatness does not mean that you weren't destined to be great.
What I'm trying to say is...I miss my sister.