In Loving Memory Of My Darling Step Brother

In Loving Memory Of My Darling Step Brother

November 2003-March 2017
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Ernest,

I miss you so much. I smile remembering your cute little dimple on your face. I smile remembering playing out in the yard for years with your brother, John Charles, and my sister, Vivian. I smile when I remember jumping on the trampoline failing to do backflips. I smile remembering running to the big willow tree in the front yard that was ideal for climbing and was perfectly surrounded by leaves so no one could see all of our shenanigans.

I laugh thinking about sitting at the dinner table rolling my eyes when you would say, "little Audrey strong and able, keep your elbows off the table." I laugh picturing little Ernest running around trying to keep up with your older brother with a huge nerf gun in your hand. I remember how smart you are. You always were the best in your class at math and blew me away with how easily you grasped the material.

Sometimes, I cry. I cry because the last time I saw you I was walking through the cafeteria when I was about to get on a bus for a soccer game. You were so tall. The little nugget who I ran around the yard with and played sharks and minnows in the pool with was taller than me. I cry because, on this Earth, I won't see you again. However, I have many more reasons to smile.

You are my little brother, and what a lucky girl I am to have gotten to spend so much time with you. You will always still be here. I feel nostalgic remembering all four of us kids cuddled up in the man cave watching movies. Since Vivian is in your class, she makes sure to always fill your locker with flowers.

All of your friends have put sweet notes inside as well so you are honored and remembered as you should be. You left quickly, but regardless of the amount of time you got, this time was anything but wasted. You made so many people smile and laugh like you did for me. Your silly, bright energy was contagious and still is. There are times you appear in my thoughts, these moments I stop and I do not cry, I smile. I feel your energy inside of me and I get so excited to see you again soon.

Love ya Ern:)

Cover Image Credit: Audrey Hall

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An Open Letter to the Best Friend I Didn't See Coming

Some people come into your life and change you forever—thanks, bestie.
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Dear best friend,

I wasn't expecting you when God placed you in my life. I had my friends. I had my people. I wasn't exactly open to the idea of new meaningful friendships because I had the ones I needed, and it didn't seem like I really needed anybody new.

Thank God that was false. Sometimes you meet people and you just know that you're going to be good friends with. Sometimes you meet people and you realize that there is no such thing as chance. I think God has a funny way of making it seem as if the things that happen to us are by chance, but honestly, that’s a load of crap. If the biggest moments of our lives were left up to chance, then I believe that would make God out to seem as if he didn’t care. It would make it seem as if He was truly abandoning me and making me face some of my most important seasons fully isolated. But you, best friend, are a true testament to the fact that God doesn’t just leave such important aspects up to chance. Thank you for taking a chance on our friendship, and thank you for allowing me to take a chance on what I didn’t realize would be the most impactful friendship in my entire life.

Thank you for being real with me. Thank you for not sugar coating things. Thank you for telling me when I have a bad attitude. Thank you for loving me through my mistakes. Thank you for supporting me in my decisions, even if it isn’t always the decision you would make. Thank you for wanting the best for me, and for making that your true intent behind the words that you say to me, whether they be constructive criticism or encouragement.

Thank you for being a goof with me. Thank you for putting me first. Thank you for seeing the importance of our friendship. Thank you for making time in your schedule for us to just sit and do homework, eat Mexican food, or sit on the porch and listen to music that emotionally wrecks you.

You’re one of a kind. You’re a shoulder to lean on. You’re a safe place. You’re a free spirit. You’re rough and tough, but your heart melts for the people you love and it’s obvious. You’re more than meets the eye. You are worth getting to know. You are worth loving. You pursue people. You are passionate about your future. You are everything that a person needs, and I really thank God that for some reason you continue to choose to be in my life. Thank you for literally dragging me up my mountains of fear when I want to stay exactly where I am at and wallow in the sadness. You bring joy—true joy—wherever you go. You are my best friend, confidant, and biggest fan. You will be the Maid of Honor, Godmother, and fun Aunt.

I used to think lifelong friendships weren’t really a thing. It just seemed like people always grew apart and forever was never a point that was attainable. Best friends forever is a cliché phrase that is continuously overused nowadays (sometimes, I even used to make light of it), but thanks for making that a reality. You are truly the best friend I could have asked for. So thank you for it all. You make life more fun, and I couldn’t thank God more for making an incredible human, friends with me.

I love you, pal!

JQ

Cover Image Credit: Julia Dee Qualls

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12 Struggles Every Girl With A Sister Has To Endure, Time And Time Again

Sister: a designated best friend, and mortal enemy.

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By "sister" I don't mean ~sorority sister~ or a friend that is so close you would consider them as a sister. No. By "sister" I mean that person that you are forced to live with and encouraged to love. This could be an adopted, step, half or full sister. As long as it is someone that is your actual family. And like most family, you usually love them (most of the time). But there are some trying times that every girl who has a sister is forced to deal with at least once.

So, whether you consider your sister your best friend, mortal enemy, or both, these are some experiences that most sisters have to endure.

1. They steal EVERYTHING

I didn't have to struggle with this problem very much as a child because I was extremely chubby and my sister has always been skinny (and I wore lime-green crocs while she wore not-hideous clothing) but now that I've gotten older, it's like she thinks my clothing is "our" clothing. *eye roll* I should've stuck with the green crocs.

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5. You constantly fight

It's either mental warfare or full-on MMA fighting.

6. But still, you love each other

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7. People either always point out how alike or different you are

"You two look so much alike!!"

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8. You need each other to survive family events

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10. Your sister's friends become your friends

11. You know everything about each other

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12. You are each other's best friends, but also mortal enemies

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Cover Image Credit:

Madison McNulty

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