Yesterday was my sister's birthday. In honor of Nanette, I am writing a guest post today about sisters. It is extra cool having two girls because I think about many ways that Erica and Mary Lane will benefit from having each other, just like Nanette and I do.
Nanette and I shared a unique childhood growing up in the Metropolitan New York area as missionary kids. Our little town in NJ had very few families who shared our faith. Even with that challenge we thrived because of our parents' commitment to raising us to know the Lord. We had an amazing time learning about other cultures by attending many churches as part of my Dad's work. I remember giggling through some pretty interesting weddings and church services with Nanette. We had a terrible habit of laughing (loudly and partly out of nervousness) in new or uncomfortable situations.
Because of our vastly different temperaments, Nanette and I weren't always the best of friends through the teen years. When she left for college, "1000s of miles" away in Nashville, my appreciation for her grew and we connected on a deeper level through phone calls and letters. After my freshman year of never fitting in at Samford University, I joined Nanette in Nashville when I transferred to Belmont. Our friendship and dedication to one another grew immensely.
I could go on and on about the times we've shared, but I will skip ahead to this past year and try to describe how priceless it was to have a sister to share the month of October 2011 with. We stumbled into the month, continuing our regular routines of working and parenting, and WHAM -- October 4th came. Dad entered the hospital and within two days was in ICU, unresponsive, and expected to die any hour. Nanette and I had many hours together either in the hospital, loving on Dad, supporting and advising Mom, or just staying connected every hour by phone or text. My love for her grew to a new level during the time when Dad died on October 13 and through the time of his memorial service and continuing now as we walk through a long season of grief together. Of course we never know the day or the hour that any of us will die, but I have a strong sense of hope for my children knowing they will have a sister who will hold their hand through the death of their parents.
OK, enough heavy stuff.
Fun Facts for Sister Saturday:
- Nanette is 31 months older than Jeanette. Erica is 22 months older than Mary Lane.
- Erica shares many "firstborn" traits with Nanette. Mary Lane shares many "youngest" traits with Jeanette.
- So far in our personalities, Erica is the brainy one like Nanette was as a child and Mary Lane is much more happy-go-lucky like Jeanette. Of course that could all change, because Nanette and I agree that we have reversed personalities in our current stages of life. Who knows?
It is just the coolest to share the sister experience. Love you, Nanette!!!!!!!