Sisters

When I hear the word sister, three images immediately pop into my head.

There is this one:

sister-sister-posterI mean, if you didn’t watch this show in the 90’s, what did you do?

This one:

haynes-sistersI can’t tell you how many times I’ve sang this song and wanted that rocking blue dress, complete with that feather whatever-you-call-it.

And this one:

FAVThis one is my favorite because this picture is a picture of my sisters. My sisters are the best, let me tell you why.

My sisters make me laugh

When God made my sisters, He gave them this special ability to make me laugh, especially when I’m grumpy or sad. No matter the situation, each one of them can say something to make me feel better, even if I don’t show them right away.

My sisters drive me crazy

Not only did God give my sisters the ability to make me laugh, He also gave them the ability to drive me up a wall. I only have one button, but boy, the three of them know how to push it. And I love them for it. It means they know me.

My sisters are always around (figuratively speaking)

My older sister lives in a different state with her husband, but my other two sisters and I still live at home. I know that that won’t always be the case. But I know that at any point in my life, I will be able to pick up the phone and have a conversation with any of my sisters about anything. That is a great feeling.

My sisters know me, and love me anyways

If there is one thing that is hard to come by, it is full knowledge of who you are and acceptance of you anyways. My sisters and I have that. We see who the other is, their gifts and talents, their flaws and insecurities, and accept each other unconditionally. Even when we are at odds with each other, I know that my sisters understand me and love me anyways.

My sisters actually enjoy my presence

Believe it or not, my sisters and I like to hang out with each other. Maybe it’s because we were forced to be each other’s friends earlier in life as loner, homeschooled kids. But now, we genuinely enjoy each other’s presence. Sure we still get into fights; doors are still closed quite forcefully, and music is still turned up to volumes that are beyond listening capacity, but for the most part we like to be around each other.

166516_418280948252274_2111334063_nGod knew exactly what He was doing when He gave me my sisters. They make me laugh, scream, cry, think, and enjoy life for what it is. They are the friends I get to see every day (except for you, Alleson!). They are the most frustrating people I know, but also the most exciting. The best part about having sisters is that we get to do life together. We’ve grown up together, and we will continue to grow up together.

When it comes to sisters, I’m pretty sure I hit the jackpot.

Memories

Have you ever had that moment when you are completely floored with a memory? Just the other day I was in the middle of a scriptwriting session with my boss when my mom knocked on the office door (my mom and I work at the same church in the same ministry, so this isn’t out of the ordinary). My mom then showed me a text she got from a very, very old friend of ours, Mr. Mark Shipley.

We have known Mr. Mark since I was three or four years old, and he has been there for some major moments in our family’s history. He and his wife, Kaye, were my best buddies when I was a little girl. Mrs. Kaye was my absolute favorite person alive. So much so that I called the two of them Markaye and Morkaye. Mr. Mark was just more of Mrs. Kaye to me.

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The older I got, the more I appreciated Mr. Mark and Mrs. Kaye for who they were, devout Christians. Mrs. Kaye would go on mission trips all over the world, and I was so inspired by her. We moved from Illinois to Florida in 2004, but my best friend Rebecca and her family lived near the Shipley’s, so eleven year old me knew they would be taken care of. 1

About four years ago, we got a phone call from Rebecca’s mom, telling us that Mrs. Kaye had passed very suddenly from a blot clot in her lungs. Just like that, Mrs. Kaye was in Heaven with Jesus. Looking back, I’m pretty sure I was in shock for a while. There just was no way that Mrs. Kaye wouldn’t be waiting in Peoria next time I went to visit.

We weren’t able to go up to the funeral, but we got a recording of it in the mail from Rebecca’s mom. It was mentioned in the service that I always called Mr. Mark Markaye, which of course made me cry. Mrs. Kaye impacted me more than I realized at the time.

So here we are, four years later, and my Mom gets a text from Mr. Mark. He had randomly remembered one day we ate at this little restaurant. It wasn’t a mind-blowing, big memory, but a quiet, simple one. It was one that brought smiles and tears to me and my mom. This is when I remembered that memories are so, so precious. 4I was young for the majority of the time we had with Mark and Kaye. I remember feeling very safe and loved when I was with them. They were like a third set of grandparents to me. But the time we spent with the Shipley’s is a time that I know we all cherish. Time is fleeting, and we don’t know how long we have to spend with people. This is why it is vital that we take advantage of the time we have been given.

Memories are funny things. They can make you laugh so hard you cry and cry so hard you laugh. They can make you feel happy and sad. But I believe that even the saddest memories are better than no memories at all.

Mrs. Kaye lived a full, Jesus loving, people caring, always smiling life.

Make memories. Take pictures. Be where you are. Don’t waste time on silly, little things that don’t really matter. Laugh with your friends. Cry with them too! Don’t let life just pass you by. Make your life count.

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