August 8, 2013

My Sister's Wedding & Why I've Been Such An Idiot

What Mandy Thinks: "Oh The Places" post
For those who read my SPOTD post in January on young love, you'll be happy to know that this young love made it official eight months later.  My sister has a new hubby and I have a new brother-in-law!  I also have something else I didn't realize I would receive: a slap in the face with new perspective.

The week up to the wedding itself was a whirlwind.  From the bridesmaid preparations to the bachelorette party in Tahoe to preparing hundreds of chicken skewers, I was going through the motions partially hoping for it all to be over but still couldn't wait for the beautiful day itself to commence.  It's not every day your sister gets married, yes?  I may have been in one of those denial bubbles all siblings get into when their sibling is about to get married (She's still a kid in my eyes.  She can't be a full-on adult already, can she?!) but once my sister walked down the grassy isle with my dad under a giant lantern-filled tree during their late August afternoon ceremony, it hit me:

What Mandy Thinks: Image of my sister and her new husband in their first dance: "The new Mr. and Mrs. first dance (via Instagram)"
The new Mr. and Mrs. first dance (via Instagram)

I haven't loved my sister enough.

The wedding itself and the people involved were basically magical and adorable and just about perfect.  This country and sunflowers and burlap shindig went forward as planned and my sister married her twoo wuv.  So why was I tearing up thinking about it for days after?  Not just because it was a wonderful display of love for the happy couple that could not have been more wonderful.  Not just because I witnessed my dad give my sister away at the alter to her new husband in that deep "I'm not gonna cry 'cause I'm a man" voice.  Not just because my sister had her happily ever after regardless of where I was with the pursuit of my own.

I haven't loved my sister enough and I knew why.

I'm not exactly besties with my one and only sibling.  We grew up together fairly normally, playing and laughing and living as any two kids bunked together would grow to love.  There were "baseball" games in our backyard, rolling around in the grass for no reason, and piggyback rides galore.  There were also fights about sharing toys, competitions on who was stronger than the other (always Char sadly), and misunderstandings of all sorts that lead to the silent treatment just like you probably have shared with your sibling.  Where did things change for us?  After the childhood extroversion from hyperactivity wore away, we realized we didn't like the same things anymore.  Char is extroverted, I am introverted.  Char wanted lots of friends.  I didn't want to share the few friends I had with her.  Char was nice to everybody.  I didn't want to be seen around school with her and resented the life she had.  I didn't want to be around anybody or anything for the most part which I considered a comfortable stay-at-home life while she found comfort in others outside.  Then I went off to college.  Char lost her sister way before I moved away.

What Mandy Thinks: Image of me, the bride, and bridesmaids at the wedding: "Most of the bridal party (via Instagram)"
Most of the bridal party (via Instagram)
A song on the radio today uses a lyric that rang true with me as a preteen when suddenly having a sister was somehow bad: "When I found I had a sister, I pretended to hate her."  I remember one fight that may have started out in a forgettable way but climaxed with me saying I hated her.  Once the words were out of my mouth and the tears started falling from her face I regretted it and took it back as hard as I could through hugs and consoling words.  I've never really hated her and never will, but I didn't exactly love her the way she deserved to be either.

Lucky for us both I'm the one who's grown up from the people-hating reality I kept myself in.  Some people don't change.  Others do 180's and even 360's but it's all up to themselves whether that angle stays or goes.  Char has stayed the exact same all her life and is the best person for keeping herself as awesome she always has.  I just took a little detour through a good chunk of our lives together that could have been so much awesomer before ending up back where I hope to start again now.  That bridal walk down the isle cleared all resentment I had for her and hope to never feel again.  I know we'll always be opposites, but now I'm just hoping I'm not too late in being close with her again.

I love my sister so freaking much and I wish her the best life ever.  Now if you'll excuse me I've gotta wipe off the tears from my keyboard and text her for no reason at all because I CAN and I LOVE HER!  BAM.

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