“You’re so lucky, I wish I had a big sister.” My whole life I have been told this when I mention my sister. My sister is not only a sibling, she is a friend, and advice giver, an example, and one of my favorite people in my life.

My sister and I have five and a half years between us. I think people assume that because of this age gap, we are not able to be as close as say Kim and Kourtney Kardashian who are only 2 years apart. For us, although it has created distance between us during sometimes in our lives, the age difference hasn’t stopped us from remaining close.

When my parents adopted me and brought me home, my sister was so excited to have a little baby to play with. She had been praying for sibling months prior - something that I will always hold so special to me.

She even gave me my name! There are countless videos of my big sis singing with me, playing with me, and even dragging me around on our favorite rainbow afghan. I remember countless days of playing pretend growing up. I never knew that aside from having someone to play with, I had so much more.

Because my sister is older, I have learned from her in many ways. I am pretty sure I got my sarcasm from her. (Sorry mom!) I watched her and I wanted to be just like her. My sister was not only smart, she was funny, witty, and cool. I listened to the music she listened to, I had a Facebook at age eleven (lots of cool points there!) and I would steal her Seventeen magazine to learn what it was like to be seventeen.

I used to think that all these "cool" things she did were what made her so awesome, but as I got older I realized that she is cool for even better reasons. Now that we are adults, we can bond over television we love, jobs, our family, and life in general. I can't imagine going through this life without her.

My whole life I had been her little shadow. Even at times, I'm sure she didn't want one. I always saw how beautiful my big sister was and I strived to be just like her. My sister, who is an actress and model, is not just outwardly beautiful. Which for real, she is gorgeous! But I saw her heart and the beauty she possessed inside too I wanted everyone to know who my big sis was and to this day I feel super lucky to have bragging rights as her sister.

Don’t get me wrong - we have had our fights the way every sibling has. But for every argument, yelling match, or door slam I have many more positive memories that I am so thankful for. My sister taught me strength.

She taught me how to pick yourself up after a bad day. She taught me how to laugh. She taught me how to work hard for what you want to do in your life. She taught me beauty and what that really looks like. She taught me how to be there for someone even when they’ve stolen your sweater.

I am so blessed to have my big sister- someone I do life with and learn life from. My sister has been there for every up and every down and she will continue to be there. I have so much to thank you for, but most of all, I want to thank you for being my big sis.