Today is my sister’s birthday.

We don’t see each other much. In fact- only about once a year when I go over to her place. Which is pretty good honestly. We’ve kind of grown apart over the years. Which is also okay. Life just does things like that.

I’m about four and half years older than her. When we were kids, we were pretty good friends. We would put on puppet shows together, walk home from school together, swim together, watch the same cartoons together. (I kinda like My Little Pony I wouldn’t tell my friends that at the time.) At Christmas, I’d assemble the Barbie toys that she’d get. I was a good big brother.

Pretty sure she’s going to kill me for sharing these lovely photos…

As we grew up into our teenage years, we were still friends-ish. I still looked out for her to an extent. Except once….

On my 17th birthday, we headed out on the bus towards the mall. She hopped off at a stop to visit a friend as I went on my way.

I came home later that evening around dinner. No one was home but the phone was ringing. It was my father. As we spoke, my heart sank. My sister had been hit by a truck. She was airlifted to the hospital.

My 17th birthday was spent in the hospital waiting room, hoping for good news. Seeing her beat up and broken, I had never wanted someone to live as much as I did for her that day. That was one of the hardest things I have ever faced.

Luckily, she survived.

Our family did not.

My father blamed me for the accident. He told me so. That’s hard for a 17 year old to deal with. But I’ve moved past that now. My sister and I have had our differences over the years, but we never talk about her accident. We keep that tucked away behind a hardship we endured.

My sister has a great personality. Even if I do think she’s crazy. One Christmas she gave me a t-shirt that said “Nikki’s Brother” because she was tired of being called Joe’s Sister. I wore that shirt for over twenty years until it finally crumbled.

My sister is one of the kindest individuals you will ever meet. She always has a smile and a laugh ready at a moment’s notice. She’s a wonderful mother who works hard to give her children the best life possible. She’s active in her community and I swear- she knows everyone in Powell River.

I want to wish my sister a great big “Happy Birthday!” You’ve made it this far- may you celebrate 38 more years of insanity if not more!

And ALWAYS look both ways before crossing the street.

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