By Shelby Cain
Two is Three. It is official. So for the next several months I have Three and Four. When people ask me their ages now I get a new reaction…the ‘wow’ face. As in wow, they’re close. Yes, they are. And lately it is not just in age.
I am watching the metamorphosis of an entirely new relationship unfold right before my eyes, and I have to say it’s fascinating. Sisters.
I grew up with brothers and while I love my brothers deeply and would do anything for them, rarely have I ever told them this. Usually we target weaknesses and mock each other relentlessly.
Sisters are different. Fiercely loyal. Fiercely fierce. Here’s an example. Three got a mother load of new toys for her birthday. She’s been sharing quite well with her older sister, because now they are “best sista buddies in the wold!” (Still working on the R’s). So the sister-buddies were playing a lovely game of horse-corral with some plastic horses when Four decides she needs an extra horse. Three disagrees, and then gets whacked in the face with a very hard Appaloosa. A small spot of blood appears on Three’s face. The scream starts to build like a tsunami warning horn and projectile tears erupt.
The blood, mixed with the fact that Three was sharing so nicely, really boils my blood so I scoop Four off the floor and send her to her room with a pretty harsh farewell. Three comes over with her streaming tears and microscopic spot of blood and through her sobs croaks out “Mommy, don’t be so mean to my big sista.”
Sisters. At their young age, they seem to have this grudge free relationship with the flexibility to literally go from hugging to slugging and back again.
When Four was allowed back in to the public arena Three went over and handed her the Appaloosa, still bearing a red speck from the now-forgotten incident, and horse-corral commenced.
As I watched this whole interaction unfold I felt a slight twinge of envy. I read once that siblings are the people we practice on. Sisters take it to another level. How amazing to have a lifelong litmus test of your own behavior. Be your best or be your worst, your sister will tell you what is acceptable, sometimes loudly, and then proceed with life, with your relationship, with horse-corral.
I realize that I am probably in for a rough ride when the teenage years commence. I expect more bloodshed when the sharing of clothes, friends, skis, and probably (shudder) boys occurs.
But hopefully I have a few more years to impart the value of their precious bond and to finish up my needlepoint ‘Sisters Before Misters’ pillows.