My younger sister and I are nine years apart so we really never had sibling rivalry. I’m not saying there wasn’t some jealousy but no real rivalry. Come on, there was no competition for attention as she was the tiny, ridiculously pretty baby of the family. EVERYWHERE we went it was “awwwwww” and “she looks like a doll”. How can an awkward 9 year old compete with that? So I didn’t.
She got compared on a different level. I was studious and academic to a fault so when she showed up in classes I had conquered the teachers would ask, “are you sure you are Bridgette’s sister?” and “Bridgette never talked in class”. LOL What those teachers did not know was that she was SMARTER than me. She just didn’t need the constant approval for confidence like I did. She did well when she wanted to. She had nothing to prove.
I think the only time I didn’t like my sister was when she was around 4 or 5 years old. My breasts came in when I was 11 and she noticed they were pretty big one day. She snuck into my room and put on one of my bras over her shirt, stuffed them with socks and came into the living room where the family was watching tv on one of our three channels. She put one hand on her hip, another on her hair and paraded around saying, “Look at meeeee I’m Sissy – I have BIG BOOOOOBS!” Mom roared in laughter and even sweet Daddy could not stifle a giggle. I. Was. Mortified. I was a tad too rough ripping the bra off my little sister and of course she cried like I was murdering her. I was admonished and sent to my room and I fumed for hours in solitude. She had no idea how much that hurt — she was just a silly little kid. Other than that incident she was someone I loved and protected all my life.
If they had gender identities when I was a teen I would have chosen Gender Nonconforming/Genderfluid. I was asexual for a very long time. I was called a Tomboy by most and Butch by people who were trying to tear me down. Hell, my own mother asked if I was a lesbian. LOL I was more comfortable in sweats, jeans and a t shirt with a ball cap than any dress although I did look fabulous when I dressed up and wore makeup. While it was fun for an hour, I remember looking forward to stripping all that off, putting my hair in a pony tail and being comfortable again. I looked amazing when a couple of drag queen friends in college took me to the one and only women’s clothing store in town and dressed me up for a fancy party I needed to attend. It was the first time I wore a pushup underwire bra even though I was a D cup and didn’t really need it. It was the first time I wore a form fitting dress (back then I was not fat). My hair was teased and curled. They did my makeup and I looked freaking GLAMorous. I couldn’t breathe with all that makeup on but I got hit on so much I got dizzy. In contrast, my sister was a great makeup artist and could look natural and pretty with minimal makeup. She had great fashion sense and she fit in with the IN crowd. I just didn’t know how to be comfortable in my own skin and she already did.
By some twist of fate I give birth to not one but two daughters. I hoped and hoped for boys because I felt inadequate to mother girls. My first one is too much like me. LOL She abhors makeup but she does like to play with her hair and prefers long skirts to jeans. She’s artsy like me but has a much better grasp of who she is and I’m so happy for her. My younger daughter loves anything with bling, animal print, dresses, dress up and excuse to carry a purse to dinner even though it is empty. Thank GOODNESS I have my sister and two sister in laws who are into fashion. When the time comes and they need advice I will farm them out. Remember, I am the person who wore a long Santa sleep T shirt dress to a Christmas party (it was an ugly sweater party so I thought it was appropriate and boy was I comfortable). I have no business ever giving fashion advice to a squirrel much less my beautiful daughters.
My daughters are 3.5 years apart almost exactly. One was born on November 15 and the other on June 1. They are polar opposites and get on each other’s nerves. Luckily or unluckily? the pandemic forced them to spend way too much time together. At 15 and 11 years old they have had to depend on each other more than ever. I am happy to say that they are closer after all this time forced together. Don’t get me wrong, the eldest STILL hates how loud the youngest is. The youngest is constantly telling her older sister that SHE IS NOT THE PARENT! Around and around they go. I try to foster their separate identities and love them just the way they are.
Sabrina has announced she will never marry or have children and will just live with cats. She wants to live alone, work enough to pay bills and read and draw in her spare time. She covets a silent life of solitude. Summer plans to attend college and become an engineer. She has promised if she makes a ton of money she will buy me a beach house. She says she can see herself with a spouse but always says him/her when she mentions whom she might like to be with. Sometimes she says maybe she will just cohabitate like two of her aunties. Maybe she will live alone too but she doubts it because that would be boring LOL. Oh, yes she wants pets too but hopes for a menagerie. She is my busybody.
I am happy to see my two girls growing healthy and strong. I love that we talk about sexuality openly and politely. I am hopeful they will be productive, open minded adults. While I will miss them, I do look forward to them moving out and living on their own. In 297 days my eldest will be 16 and in 2023 she will turn 18 and either strike out on her own or go to college. I predict she will earn an associate’s degree in her magnet high school and go straight to work but we shall see. I’m not a collector and I am ready to release my little bird from the nest and watch her fly away with love in my heart. By the time the second one strikes out I will nearly be 60 years old and thinking about what retirement will look like so I will not be what is considered the “normal” empty nester.
While there is some sibling rivalry between them and there will be more if they become interested in dating, I am happy to see they can come together even if it is to play silly role playing game, race on Mario Kart, build Lego or murder each other on Among Us. I feel incredibly rewarded be a part of these incredible young ladies’ lives and look forward to seeing how they contribute to the world.