Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Twenty-two years ago today, Youngest Sister was born. My mother's friend Laura had come down from Toronto to take care of us, since my father was away at a training exercise, and my mother had a history of going into labour while my father was out of town. We were eating dinner when the phone rang: "It's a girl," said Laura, and I was disappointed. I already had Middle Sister--what did I need another girl for?

Youngest is almost a full seven years younger than I am, which has often lead to conflict for us. When we were younger, our conflicts were exacerbated by the fact that I was older and therefore always "should know better" which meant that if she did something wrong, I usually got blamed for it. This was usually furthered by the fact that our lives were just so different--by the time that I went away to university, she hadn't even graduated from elementary school yet. We also have very different personalities: as much as birth order is pop psychology, some of the ideas resonate really clearly for my sisters and me: I am bossy and need to be "right", Youngest has a healthy disregard for rules and a driving need for attention. (We won't talk about the Middle Sister.) We still have occasional clashes, but these are relatively minor.

In spite of all that, Youngest and I have developed a really strong relationship over the last few years. She has grown up to be an intelligent, capable, and beautiful young woman, and I couldn't be prouded of her. She is so much fun to spend time with, and she is both funny and fearless. She is newly certified as a registered massage therapist, and intends to return to school as a mature student to pursue nursing. She loves music and reading fantasy/sci-fi. She has the most beautiful tattoo of a purple starfish on her back. She had, at one point, almost twenty piercings in various places on her body. She is the poster girl for the Historic Site Which Shall Not Be Named's Sister Site; her photograph is on billboards and in brochures. Though we both have our dad's colouring, she looks so much like our mother (which is strange, because I look like so much like our father, but Youngest and I also look quite alike). When I get married in October, she will be my maid of honour. I hope that she knows how awesome and special I think she is.

Happy birthday to my favourite sister who does not live in North Bay Rock City.

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