An Open Letter To My Sister

An Open Letter To My Sister

Don't settle for less than the best
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“My wish for you is that this life becomes all that you want it to, your dreams stay big, your worries stay small and you never need to carry more than you can hold” – Rascal Flatts

You have put me first in so many things, and I can’t thank you enough. You never fail to encourage me to keep on keeping on, so now it’s my turn. It’s ok to focus on yourself and your dreams, everything else is going to fall into place, just be patient. Your big dream is right around the corner and you’re going to make it there, I have no doubts on that. You are my best friend, my person, and even though we literally and figuratively don’t see eye to eye I have got your best interest in mind. You get under my skin like only a sister can but for some reason I still love you.

“Have faith in me, I said I’d never let you go, and I never did”- A Day To Remember

I have always admired your loyalty to people, you give and give and give. I don’t know how many times we have gotten in a fight but you still had my back. You are one of those people that keep your word and you give your heart out to people, even those that don’t deserve it. And yes, I will tell you if that guy is a jerk or if he doesn’t deserve you so get over it.

“I know you’ve got mountains to climb but always stay humble and kind”- Tim McGraw

You’ve achieve so much and should be proud, just, don’t let it go to your head. I know that you are a confident individual but the line that separates confident and cocky is one that you seem to tiptoe. Be proud, just not boastful. Let people make their judgments’ on you as an individual rather than showing them your laurels. As mom has been telling you for years, the world does not revolve around you. You know I’m right so please don’t hate me.

“I have my mother’s dreams, I have my father’s eyes, you can’t take that from me, just go ahead and try”- Rise Against

Nothing stops you, no matter how big the set back. You have the eyes of someone that has worked for everything they have gotten. Your dreams are a reality and you will achieve them, no matter what gets in your way. I admire that about you, there is a fight in you that is unlike any other. This fight fuels you in everything you do, sometimes, you just need to give it a spark.

“And you can tell everybody that this is your song”- Elton John

For months you have begged and interrogated me about when I’d write an article about you so, this is your song. I want the best for you because you truly deserve it and it is not a bad thing to wait for the best. Your life is changing so much and you need to be patient and trust the process. As always, I love you and I’m here for you.

Cover Image Credit: Barb Piepmeyer

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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What It Feels Like To Be Reunited With Your Sisters

My best friends, my confidants, and the most annoying girls you'll ever meet all in one.

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As someone who has always been close with their siblings, it's always strange when I come to the sudden realization (usually at three in the morning) that we will probably never live very close to each other again. We're scattered all around the nation right now: one of us on the West Coast, another sister in the Midwest, a brother in New England, and the last one (me) in the South. My sisters and brother were more than just siblings, they were my best friends growing up. The fact that I only get to see them during Christmas and maybe a weekend in the summer breaks my heart.

After the winter holiday break, we began to collectively wonder: when is the next time we'll all actually be together again? Will we be able to see each other in the summer? Will my older sister be too busy with her new Californian job? Will my other sister be preoccupied with research in her graduate program? Will my brother be willing to stop playing video games to go out to dinner with us if we even could all gather up?

I decided to take action against my fear of never seeing my siblings again. While most of my peers were planning a trip to some tropical location for spring break, I saved enough money to buy a ticket to Chicago where one of my sisters lives. My mother agreed to join the trip, which encouraged my oldest sister to abandon sunny San Francisco and visit the Windy City.

Even though the gap between my winter break and my spring break was not too large, I still missed my siblings immensely and longed for any moment I could spend with them. I'm aware that these opportunities will be few and far between, so I need to take advantage while I can.

Of course, your idolized version of being reunited with family does not always align with reality. Within ten minutes of seeing my sister, we were already bickering, and that was not the first time we would fight during the trip.

Still, part of me misses those pointless arguments. I miss the yelling, the hair-pulling, how my two older sisters sometimes gang up on me as the youngest child. To me, all of those things are worth it because, after all of that, we can laugh about childhood memories or give each other advice on our love lives (or for me, lack thereof). I get to see my sisters try to balance becoming adults while they still giggle at "That's What She Said" jokes.

It's strange to watch my sisters get older, to see them discover their path in life. I always saw them as so mature and sure of themselves, but it's nice to know that they're still themselves. Growing up doesn't mean they've lost their sense of humor adventure. They're still my sisters, and they're still my best friends.

After this, I don't know when the next time I'll see them will be. Of course, there is so much technology available, so if I really wanted to sit on the couch and watch "Brooklyn 99" with my sister while eating dinner, we could do that together. But, it's not quite the same if you don't get to share a blanket or occasionally smack one-another in the arm when they keep interrupting the episode. As much as we try to imitate the physical sensation of being next to someone, you can't mirror the feeling completely.

Now that we've gone to the Midwest, maybe our next trip will be to the West Coast, and then they'll even visit me at college. All I know is that distance will not keep me and my sisters apart. Family can cross timezones, cross borders, cross all obstacles. For family, I'm willing to do what I can for another moment of rewatching the last episode of Friends for the thirtieth time.

Oh, and I guess my brother can come too.

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