Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Happy Birthday AinA!
It is my youngest sister’s birthday today. Well, it’s probably over for her already, what with the time difference and all. But I wanted to say a few words about her because I am thinking of her today.
Sisters share a very special relationship, my sisters and I maybe more than most because we are all so close in age. But to focus on the birthday sister- in our youth she was the baby and I was the oldest. So we both tended to have our attention battles with our other sister, which often meant we were on the same side. Offering protection or deflection as the case may be.
She was a pretty nutty kid. Which if you know her today is probably not all that strange to you. She wanted to grow up to be an animal for much longer than most kids although the animal changed from kitty to unicorn. She went through very strong “obsessions” with various cartoons from Smurfs, to Transformers, to Voltron, to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles….
Our age difference seemed much more pronounced when I entered high school. I probably don’t remember much of what she was like in middle school because I was too self-absorbed. (teenagers!) But I do know that Pu and I had our fair share of rebellious (Pu) and stupid (both of us) behavior that caused our parents lots of heartache and AinA, in reaction decided to be a good student and good child in general. One of my strongest memories is right before they left to move to NM, I offered to get her drunk for the first time. (She was just about to enter 9th grade at the time) She refused, saying she didn’t feel ready. I was amused but really respected her for that. (And look at her now!)
The rest of our history has been mentioned in our blogs before so I won’t rehash it, but eventually she came to live in Chicago for a while and it was here that our relationship really deepened. We got to know each other as adults. We helped each other out. I got very familiar with all of her strange eating habits. (Only a few weeks ago she was enjoying fiber cereal on her ice cream) We hung out with each other’s friends, hosted parties for each other (well, I hosted parties for her), joined the same book club.
And I do miss having her around. To cook together, or grab drinks together or just hang out. I think we would probably shop together now too which we never really did.
But it is obvious to me that she is so happy in Amsterdam. I am totally jealous of all her international travel, her many languages, her ease in new situations. (Or at least the appearance of ease) She seems calmer, more content, yet with all of the energy and vivaciousness she has had since she was a little girl.
Who know what the future will bring for her? Maybe Shanghai? Not even she knows, but I can’t wait to see what happens.
Happy Birthday Little Sis!