I stood in a parking lot talking to my sister for nearly an hour last night. It was, without a doubt, the best hour I’ve spent this week. Although I would say we are close, long conversations like this are few and far between. We are close in the “we both think this is hilarious because of something that happened 15 years ago that only you and I remember” kind of way, or in the “I’m hurting because you’re hurting or I’m thrilled because you’re thrilled and I know you know that” kind of way.
We love each other. We drive each other nuts. We are quick to roll our eyes at one another’s comments, but even quicker to lend a listening ear or offer support when the other needs it most. To an outside observer, we couldn’t be more different from one another (except for the fact that we have the same voice). However, there are more fundamental similarities between us that I can count.
We lived far from each other for a span of 7 years, rarely crossing paths as we bounced between France, Spain, Turkey, Greece, Morocco, Northfield, L.A., New Zealand before finally landing — both of us (well, all 3 of us, Annie finally got a brother) — in Minnetonka in 2007. During these 7 years apart, we both went through some of the most trying experiences of our lives thus far. We found ourselves in dysfunctional situations (relationships, work situations, etc.). We dealt with them in our own ways, sometimes on our own. We discovered, we learned. We changed. At times I forget how much she grew during the time we spent away from one another. Last night was another reminder of that.
As she recounted how she had recently handled what can only be described as a craptastic interpersonal situation, I stood in awe. The clarity with which she presented her ideas — the way she combined emotional honesty with rational analysis and generosity with self-respect — bespoke a wisdom beyond her years. I only have one word for how I felt as I drove home last night: proud.