On TV and in movies, you see the archetypal sister relationship so often: the older sister is bossy and uptight, and the younger sister is a mischievous brat.
They fight all the time and over some of the dumbest things, but before the screen goes black, there's a heartwarming story of how the older sister was just trying to help and protect her younger sister, and the younger sister was just trying to be like her older sister because she looks up to her.
My sister and I had the fighting part down when we were little, but at least to my memory there were never any Hollywood make-ups like that.
Oh, I definitely tried to be the helpful older sister who was the role model for my baby sister, but I don't think that really happened and it honestly doesn't seem like it needed to. I call her my baby sister, but she's only two years younger than me and about to turn 20 (don't know how the heck that happened). She was always the "wild child" of my siblings, but really she was very strong-willed, imaginative, energetic and she liked to have fun.
I'm glad to see that so much of that made it from kindergarten to now.
My sister is strong and strong-willed; she doesn't take the sexist comments she gets from customers at the AutoZone she works at, she calls people out when they need it (myself included), and she has persevered and grown through more things than she probably tells me.
She gets into these "punchy" moods where she is hilariously energetic, whether it's coming from something good or not is a whole other thing, but in the end a lot of the time she'll break the tension and have all of us laughing until we can't breathe. Or more so, until she can't breathe, in which case then we are all gasping for air.
Going to college is hard enough on its own, but my baby sister has been to three different schools in three semesters.
That's incredible to me because I knew when I was making my decision that unless something major happened, I wouldn't be able to change schools because I would have had such a hard time adjusting. Not her. She went with her gut and has been going at it until she found what she felt passionate about and where she felt comfortable doing it.
Now, she'll probably roll her eyes at me when she reads this part, but my sister is so drop dead gorgeous.
I don't know when she went from mismatched clothes and light up shoes to a beautiful, grown woman but damn! And somehow, she manages to be modest about herself, while also being happy with how she is, not needing any approval or input from anyone else. She's incredible! While some people try to fit some "picture perfect mold", she was one of the women who opened my eyes to see how you can be happy and love yourself without looking like you walked out of Photoshop.
When I get asked what I'm going to do or who I want to be after college, the second is pretty easy for me to answer.
I want to be like my sister. Strong, beautiful, feisty and lovable. (Eventually, I also want to be like my grandma: margarita-loving Disney fan with an awesome car.) I'll take a few notes from my lil sis, and I'll be as "me" as I want and try to not care what anyone else thinks about it.
I know for a fact that I wasn't a picture-perfect big sister, but I'd like to think that I did an OK job.
Looking up at my baby sister (quite literally because she's also taller than I am), I don't have the words to say how proud I am of her. I hope that as I grow into my best self, I can take some notes from her. Marissa, you are the best sister God could have given me and I love you to the moon and back.
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