SEESTERS xo

A sister shares childhood memories and grown-up dreams. ~ Unknown

Jackie and I shoulder to shoulder, against the world

My younger sister and I, 1988 on my first day of kindergarten going to a new school half way through the year. I remember being scared to not know anyone in a new school. Looking at this photo though leads me to believe that I had a nice pep talk given to me from the mouth of my little sis and partner in crime. I was always good at leading her and picking up her sentence where she’d leave off. But she was also good at sweet encouragements and always believed in her big sis.

This union of sisterly friendship has carried into our adult life and I am ever grateful for that. I really don’t know what I would do without either of my sisters really. Jackie still looks to me for answers in life the way she seemed to early in our childhood. Though I thought I had all the answers being the oldest… and I still think I have them all. Some of the time. (And she believes me!! Don’t tell!) But in all honesty her and I bounce off of each other with ideas, encouragement and questions still all the time. I’m sad I don’t get to see her as often as I’d love to, or that our kids would love to, but that makes the times that we do even more special.

This weekend was an extra special moment to come visit…

She did it!!

My sis and her husband both ran their first half marathon together at the San Diego Rock N’ Roll Marathon this past weekend. They were super excited to set out on this venture together, and I was very proud to see them accomplish it! They had a couple of set backs along the way of training but were still very determined to get out there and finish. Our Dad ran it with them in his usual supportive fashion! They each had a unique story to run for: Jackie set out on this goal a mere four months after having her second baby… Awesome motivation right there! Her hubs Andy was out to do it with her, winds up pulling a calf muscle half way into the training program, as well as had an appendicitis a month before the race… My Dad trained his tush off for a Cabo trip that my parents took a couple of weeks ago.

Needless to say they wore their reasons, LOUD AND PROUD!!

GAVE BIRTH 6 MONTHS AGO…APPENDECTOMY 4 WEEKS AGO…CABO 2 WEEKS AGO…

It was a beautiful day down in San Diego, perfect race weather! I didn’t brave the crowds and street closures at the race but our Mom and I had the post-race breakfast ready to go for them upon their return. We had a champagne toast and hashed over the pain and stories of their experience. That’s what I love to hear, everyone’s personal take on the experience and how they got through it.  All in all it was not too hard for them, which was encouraging for them to feel as though they could do this again! (I plan on doing the next one with them, if it can work out that way) The cool thing was that my Dad got to hop in on the drums at one of the band stations set up along the way. He did Blink 182 with a band set around mile 9. He was totally happy about that, since he was scheming it up in his head to try to do this during the race I know.

I’m so happy for my sister and bro-in-law to have accomplished this! It’s definitely a huge deal to take on goals with an area in life that is not your forte and then totally DO IT!! Neither of them were really  into running before this, so it just goes to show that anything is possible. I think my sis might even be obsessed about medals now like I became… Maybe she caught the B-U-G!

Either way, I’m so proud of my sister for this accomplishment. I know that she can do anything she puts her mind to really and this is one of many ways that she shows it!

ROCK ON JACKIE AND ANDY!!! 🙂

 

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February “hello’s” and “goodbye’s…” <3

“The story of life is quicker than the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye.” ~Jimi Hendrix

I’m such a quote nut, it’s kind of silly but it really helps out in the inspiration department for me. The quote above in particular hit me at the right time. About this time of the year, I get to thinking a lot about how quickly LIFE does go by. February is often a month that yields reminders for my family and I about the lives that we’ve loved and lost. For a period of time, this month seemed surrounded by a steady mixture of emotions… a lot of “hello’s” and “goodbye’s” so to say.

It began with the sudden passing of my dad’s father on February 19, 2001 and was too soon followed by my mom’s mother losing her battle with cancer on February 16, 2003. Both of them lived what we remember as long and full lives, however it still seemed too soon at the time as they were just in their early 70’s. Ironically, the day that my grandmother passed away was also my youngest sister Brianna’s birthday. As unexpected and coincidental that it was, the passing of two of my grandparents within two years, all the while surrounding my sister’s birthday was something almost surreal when I look back on it. It was an intense time of emotions, that I just can’t put into words.  We had to make it even more of a point not to let the deaths in the family overshadow the life that was still living and growing, especially with something like a birthday . The grieving process is incredibly hard and unique to everyone and it has the opportunity to consume us for a time. I can imagine that the time period for me was nothing compared to what my parent’s must have gone through, or my sister for that matter.

As time truly does heal, that missing piece of our hearts that felt as though it would never be filled again, did somehow become whole once more. Life went on and the memory of our grandparents continues to live on strong thanks to the memories and stories that they have left behind. I still wish some times for a moment again to tell them that I love them. To have a chance again and really listen with all my heart to the amazing stories that my Tata (dad’s dad) loved to share about his life. Or to cherish again the laughter of my grandma’s. It was so contagious and so a part of her essence. Though bringing back that time in this life is not possible, the love for them continues to live in my heart.

My Tata and I camping when I was younger

My Grandma and one of my aunts playing with me as a baby

Love can live on through many ways; through the memories, through pictures, and especially through the LIVING. My sister Brianna just celebrated her 24th birthday. Brianna is very much a living part of this month. She is a vibrant and talented soul (an incredibly gifted pianist). She is a very strong young woman and recently has been through some enormous test’s to her character and strength. It is all part of her journey of life and that is what’s important. As an older sister I feel so proud to continue to witness growth in her. Although we aren’t the little kids that we once were, it doesn’t mean I stop watching out for her. I always want the best for both of my sister’s. We’ve all had our fair share of growing and learning to do and continue to. Whether the experiences are difficult or not, it’s what makes us and our stories. The three of us all have taken our own unique paths, but are still here for each other through it all. Thankfully our parents set us up with a very solid foundation of support too I might add. I wanted to share and acknowledge the special person Brianna is, especially for her birthday that just passed but also just to let her know again how happy I am for the huge steps she has taken, and the courage she’s shown. I admire her for it more than she probably realizes! These are the things I never want to regret that I didn’t say. I love her so much!

Brianna and I

Life definitely goes quicker than a blink it seems and often we wait until it’s too late to express our feelings to those we care about. Opportunities are here now while we are here to live it, while we have the arms to hug, the eyes to admire, the ears to listen and the words to speak of how important our loved one’s are to us now in this very moment. I hope to always try my hardest to show love and appreciation for the people who mean so much to me before it is too late. To take up the moments while I have them. Loving and celebrating life of the living seems as important as celebrating the memory of life once it leaves us. I guess it’s about sharing more “hello’s” before it is “goodbye.”