Wow. When I think of who you are today. I think, Wow.
Once you were this pale thing with wispy-white hair. You played in the mud in your oversized rubber boots. You went on silent adventures without telling us. You’d turn up and we’d remember you were missing—we’d remember you were there.
I think we forgot you were there because you were quieter than the rest. Sandwiched between an older, beautiful, self-assured and comical older sister and a hammed up, gregarious, and good-looking-and-he-knows-it younger brother. We didn’t value you less because you were quieter and your personality was doing its own thing on the inside. We just—didn’t always notice you.
Then suddenly, you were there. Your amazing hair and amazing fashion took a step into the world. You went alone. You were courageous—something I am reminded doesn’t mean you are unafraid, only that you recognize something is more important than your self-preservation. You took steps to notice your own brokenness and sought to find healing in places maybe the rest of us hadn’t looked. You were tired of being lumped in with a big family, going unnoticed, so you branched out to find your own place—making your own friends and finding your own path.
I wasn’t around a whole lot in those transformational older years, but I certainly watched with anticipation and wondered what would become of my little sister. There were times I was scared and I prayed you’d be okay. There were times I was full-to-bursting proud of you that I just wanted to explode.
I’ve loved learning from you. I’ve loved the complexity with which you think about life and God and family. I’ve been challenged as I’ve watched you take risks with love. I’ve been challenged by your boldness and your unswayable convictions. I’ve been challenged by the moments when you don’t need anyone’s approval—yet somehow your heart remains open to move towards others.
I know life has been stretching for you. But I hope, no matter what, that your heart has grown bigger and your love for God has grown deeper. I pray this is a rich season for you and that no matter what happens, you will be able to move forward unafraid. You have more dignity and worth than you or anyone could imagine. I pray God does whatever it takes for this truth to be real to you. I pray you experience God’s love so profoundly that your awe and wonder at Him grows astronomically this year and every year after that.
I love your grown-up self. I’m overwhelmingly grateful I can call you, friend.
Your friend and big sister