Growing up an only child gave me many advantages and control over my life, one of the benefits being my ability to choose my siblings. Now I know you can’t really choose your siblings, but growing up I got the choice on who to surround myself with and who I allowed to stay through my whole life. This letter is addressed to that sister I got to choose to do life with.

First, I want to thank you for letting me have someone to grow up with. You are one of the only people that knows the struggles I endured and knew me through my growing pains. It is so incredibly difficult to explain some aspects of my life to new friends as sometimes it’s extremely hard to anecdote your past to someone who wasn’t there or can’t grasp the contexts that are necessary to understand what’s going on in my head now. Things that happen when we are young shape who we are today, and not being able to fully explain how much someone, somewhere, or something means to us and putting that into words is damn near impossible, and you just, well get it.

That being said, I want to thank you for sticking by me. I decided to move cross-country to better myself, better my quality of living, and discover life outside of our small town universe. You, closely behind, dropped your everything to do the exact same, and today we live 1,146 miles away from our childhood in what is now the only place we could ever call home. You will never know how much having you here, in our cultured, brewery wealthy, musically inclined paradise means to me. Even in our time apart, we remained connected and you never failed to send me that new A Day to Remember song that we then proceeded to quote for months or Victoria Secret legging sale that I just simply had to spend 60 bucks on.

You have saved me time and time again.

Through our angsty teenage years, through the depression, through the multiple deaths of people close to us, you have saved me. Even when I felt “alone”, in my heart of hearts I knew I wasn’t and I truly knew that I wasn’t the only one that could feel this way, and that saved me, saved my heart, saved my soul.

I want to thank you for Tumblr posts, sneaking liquor into concerts, (well, sneaking alcohol just about everywhere), for hours of OneTreeHill, for my music collection, for moshpitts, for tattoos, and puppy parks. I need to thank you for pulling me out of every failed relationship and for letting me live on your couch more times than I’d like to admit. I have been in love before, but nothing feels like the unshakable bond I feel with you, and that feeling that you will, without a shadow of a doubt, be there for me for years to come.

Your family has become my family, and mine has become yours. I cannot wait to walk down the aisle and have you as my maid of honor (in your prom dress of course, cause that shit was expensive and NEEDS to be seen again). And I can’t wait to have my first child so we can discover downtown over baby bottles and glasses of wine and have them come home to the best day ever with their “way cooler than mom” aunt. I have been so blessed to be able to choose that person to be in their lives.

There’s a reason One Tree Hill became such a huge part of us, and it’s P.Sawyer and B.Davis:

“My best friend –OK this one is so important; choose wisely, I got really lucky with mine. My best friend is funny, intelligent, creative, beautiful, and successful, and very kind. She’s also impulsive, frustrating, um complicated, childish, but I would not have her any other way. And the best part about Brooke Davis is that she always puts friends first. So if you are ever in any kind of trouble, you know who to call. I can’t think of anyone I’d rather have watching over you.”

If you have sisters you understand the power of their unconditional love, but please don’t forget to cherish the siblings you’ve chosen for yourself. This is the shortest possible thank you I could ever begin to produce for you, for there is just so much about us, you, that means so much to me. Here’s to breakups, numerous empty bottles of wine, Wicked soundtracks, and the best sister I could’ve ever asked for.

Love you forever,

The sister you chose