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Tears of Sister Sweetness

I’ve been doing a lot of reflection recently; especially in the last three or four months.

One thing I truly dislike about some of my life choices is the fact that after I graduated from college, I chose to move half-continent away from my family. Twice actually. To be honest, I had to if I wanted a job. When I graduate you mailed out resumes and cover letters. I sent out 79 – that was a lot of paper and stamps and time researching. Of those 79 and only got four interviews out of it. Of those four interviews, I received two job offers. One in the Washington, D.C. area and the other in Los Angles, which came in after I’d accepted the D.C. area job. That seems like such a LONG time ago… I guess it was… it was back in 1986. In 1988, I moved to SW Michigan and in 1990, moved to the “other coast” and have been in Oregon for over 21 years.

I grew up in Missouri, went to college in Missouri and my immediate family was in Missouri. Moving away from home was hard, but was a necessity – I had to go where the jobs were. I am the oldest of seven. Although that sounds like a “big family” it really wasn’t. That seven includes step-siblings, half-siblings and one “full blood” sibling. I’ve never thought of my “steps” and “halfs” as their designations depict. I don’t care if they’re “step” or “half”… They are all my brothers and sisters.

My “older younger sister” (Kady) and I are 13.5 years apart. Now I refer to Kady as “older younger sister” is because I’m the oldest so she’s younger than me, but is the older of my two sisters – my “baby sister” and I are 16.5 years apart. I know B hates it when I call her my “baby sister”, but “younger younger sister” just doesn’t sound right.

I didn’t get to see much of Kady when we were younger. We lived in different houses for all but maybe eight months of her life. We’d see each other for special occasions and visits. When I moved away we “never” saw each other. In fact, after moving in 1986 it was YEARS before we saw each other again.

Here we are celebrating my 16th birthday… (please ignore the 1980 haircut and glasses! ;) )
wpid-Stef16thBday-2-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

…with Dad…
wpid-Stef16thBday-1-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

…oh yeah… and my brother B and me wrestling with Kady cracking up over it… (black bar to protect the “innocent” – more because he’d not be happy with the photo being out there for all to see ;) )
wpid-BSWrestlingOct1980-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

Here we are playing with one of her new birthday toys several months later when she turned three… gotta love the bows in my hair!
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I only recall seeing her three times from 1986-1997… OK, now I’m getting teary… Strange thing is that I’ve grown closer to Kady in the last several months.

We lost my step-mom in February (Kady’s mom). During her illness I spoke with Kady frequently especially at the end. I was so worried about her being there having to deal with everything on her own. I realize she has her husband and best-friend, but my “big sister” instincts kicked into high gear.

It’s really strange, for both of us and our dad, my step-mom’s death has brought us even closer. We talk either by email, text, Facebook, Pinterest, FaceTime or by phone multiple times a week. As much as losing my step-mom hurt and left a void in my life, I love that I have my sister and dad in my life even more than before!!

This is us just a few months ago, when I went back for the funeral…
wpid-StefKady-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

It was a strange visit… we grew so much closer and laughed our asses off so much! In fact, now every time we talk on the phone we get laughing. It’s GREAT!!

Well, this brings me up to yesterday… there was a knock at the door and a package was sitting there. I was a bit surprised because I wasn’t expecting anything. It was from Kady.

Inside I found this… YEAH… THAT’S HOT PINK BUBBLE WRAP! LOVED IT!
wpid-HotPinkBubbleWrap-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

OK, she sent me more the bubble wrap, but I have kept it… it’s too pretty to give away! :D (OK, I’m officially “off my rocker”!)

Inside the bubble wrap, I found this…
wpid-PlaquefromSis-2012-05-15-12-00.jpg

I exclaimed, “AWWWWWWW!” started crying. It meant so much to me. One, because Kady thought of me and two because we laugh so much together is crazy! I can’t wait to hang it in my home office so I can see it all the time. Funny thing is I’ve been working on something for her (Kady, ignore that you read that).

I wish so much that we lived closer… I’m soooo glad that we can connect in so many ways… we gotta “FaceTime” soon! I’m sure Miss Moo would like that, too!! ;)

So, to my dear sister Kady… I LOVE YOU!!! Thank you for making my day!
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