Tonight I want to honor my sister since it is her birthday this month.
I looked forward to spending time with her when we were kids. Me as the big sister and how we would be playing. I imagined all these sweet things that sisters enjoy–looking at the Nido commercial before. I could not wait to be with her and for Mom to give birth already so I can be with her. I would compute how old I would be when we could have activities together.
But she was born ill so they could not take her home yet. I got mad at my Mom for not bringing her back with her. I was disappointed. But I kept on hoping. I kept asking Mom when she would be home. She was finally out of the hospital, I was hoping that she would be home but my Mom told me that she could not take care of her and my brother and I at the same time while working and so she let other people take care of her. I got mad at her again for not keeping her promise that she would take my sister home. I kept counting the months til her first birthday because my Mom promised that she would take her home when she turned one.
It was a series of disappointments that in the end I gave up. I said I didn’t care if they would take her home or not. At an early age I’ve had my first experience of letting go. And when I gave up on something/someone, I had no sense of appreciation for that anymore.
Then she finally went home. But she was a stranger to me already.
I remember I dream of having fair-skinned like these cute American girls. I was always bashed for my dark skin. They blamed me for not drinking enough milk and for choosing to drink Milo/Ovaltine instead. One time I saw one cute girl in our school and parents would cooed for her cuteness. I wondered who was this girl because she was like a celebrity. I was amazed like I was amazed to see American girls before. Then I saw our helper and realized that that cute girl was indeed my sister. I couldn’t believe that I have a sister like that. I could not believe my luck!
Then the years of being real siblings happened. When siblings were annoying and ignored and we would always quarrel with each other. We grew up differently. As little kids, I know they would reach out to me–her and our brother. They would always ask me to play with them and they would create cards for me on my birthday. But I would push them away because I don’t want them or anyone to get too attached. I didn’t know why before but it was probably because I know I had nothing to offer them. I would doubt why they would like me when there was nothing to be liked. I guess showing affection for me is a sign of weakness. Even without knowing it, I guess that was the early sign of my being “robotic”. But I guess the child in me has this tremendous love for my family that although we haven’t really told each other that we love one another, the powerful connection remained.
Through the years, I would often marvel at how my sister would get to live my dreams.
When I was in gradeschool, I wanted to be a muse but I didn’t become one because I have dark skin. My sister, however, was always the muse in her class.
Again, when I was in gradeschool, I dream of becoming an angel during the Easter Sunday dawn activity that they do in our community before. But it was my sister who got to be an angel for that activity.
When I was in highschool I would dream of being a member of our church choir because their voices were heavenly. I wondered if I could become one of the altos but I never had the guts to try out. It was my sister who auditioned and got in as a soprano.
In my senior year highschool, I dream of playing softball all the time. The love for this sport happened when Coach Eric taught us how to hit the ball during our practice in our intramurals. I gained confidence in the game, me and my teammates that we eventually became champions in that event. When my sister got to highschool she tried out as a varsity of softball and she got in. She got to live my dream. Their team would often go to Manila to compete against the other prestigious school. How cool is that?! She also got to have the La Salle varsity bag. I like that bag! I like it that I would use it going back and forth to Manila.
I can only dream of becoming popular in school for I am a nerd/boring one but she was the popular cool one.
In uni (college), I dream of taking psychology as my course but I took up pharmacy instead. Guess who got to take that course?
In life after uni, I dream of having an engineer as a boyfriend. I’ve had my chances but I didn’t take it, guess who has an engineer boyfriend?
I’m happy for all the great things happening to her. She has always been the stronger one–the frontliner of our family. She was the youngest but she was the one who faced all of our family’s challenges.
I was never worried about her. I always knew that she would always be taken cared of. I always knew that she would always be in good hands.
I guess what I can do for her is to dream bigger if it would pave the way for her to achieve greater things in life. By God’s grace I know that He would extend His love and kindness not only to me but to the rest of my family, after all He has promised that if one member of the family got saved, the whole household would be saved as well. I’m holding on to this promise. And so on her birthday, I pray that God will do greater things in her life. In Jesus’ mighty name. Amen.