bravery & grace: lessons from a lil one (not so lil now)

June 01, 2016

I wrote this in November, but never published it. Here it is, now, still as true as ever.

Today my sister taught me about grace and bravery. Now, to be sure, my sister has taught me many other lessons along the way (sometimes about the above, sometimes about other things.) But today, she reminded me about what it means to be an adult and to be in relationship.
As siblings, we go back pretty far and that means that we have a lot of history. Good history and bad history. And, to be fair, at times, I’ve really sucked at being an older sister any sort of sister.
If you were to ask her, she’d probably tell you about the time I had her close her eyes and open her mouth so I could put a treat in. I put a worm in her mouth. I think I thought it would be funny? My only defense, is I was still a kid. But still—sucky older sister.
So back to today. My sister called me, which was strange, because we had spoken earlier that morning already. We chit chatted for a few minutes and then my sister said, “I called because I wanted to apologize to you for two things.”
Both were things that I had mentioned the day before—one had to do with an upcoming visit and the other with some crossed wires during the past year. And at the surface neither was something that should’ve been a big deal, actually. But at their roots they were both about important stuff. The things that are the meat and the heart and the fabric of our relationships—one was about not feeling like my feelings mattered to her and the other was about not feeling important and feeling excluded.
Her risk set the tone for a space where we were both open and both loving and both willing to give the other the benefit of the doubt. And in that space, healing occurred.

So my question for you is where are the places where you’re willing to take a risk, to imagine something new and to allow someone in your life to be different from who you remember them to be?

(I’ll tell you a secret my acupuncturist told me—our cells are dying and new ones are coming into being all the time.) So literally, that person is not the same person you remember them to be. Their cells and organs and skin and physical body is a new body. Ah, the miracle of the human body. The miracle of life, really, cause it’s not just humans, that’s for sure.
We had so much hurt. So much history. And sometimes I forget that my sister isn’t the 4 year old or 8 year old that I had to compete with. And sometimes, that sister of mine, a younger sister of mine, teaches me something that I’ve forgotten. Something that although I know it, I can never hear too many times: risk. risk. risk.


My sister and me, about 4 years ago

My sister and me (4 years ago)

My sister and I about 15 years ago.

My sister and me (15 years ago)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *