This one’s for the girls…


Last month I had the pleasure of writing a post for Dear Teen Me, an awesome blog where authors write letters to their teen selves. I figured it would be easy, I had so much to say. After a few weeks of pondering and coming up with a few different ideas, I ended up writing about how my teen self shouldn’t be afraid to stand up for herself. And then I spent about a month editing it. It was surprisingly hard to write. During my wavering back and forth about the post I ended up writing another letter. I was inspired by the book I’m working on now that features a great sister-brother relationship. And though I’m a few days late for National Siblings Day (seriously, when was this holiday invented?) I wanted to share it here because I think it’s great advice for anyone with younger siblings. Please note, if you read my Dear Teen me post, I used the same opening paragraph and I’m too lazy to change it, so feel free to skip.

Dear Alisha,

Hey there, you boy-crazy, Roxette-loving, lip-syncing maniac. Oh, the drama of it all: friends and frenemies, rumors and romance, heartbreak and histrionics. I’m trying to think of some sage advice to give you, but as I attempt for the 27th time to write this letter, I don’t think you should (even if you could) change a thing. Because each mistake, each mortifying moment, each cringe-worthy episode in your life has made you who you are today (not to mention provided ample material for your future writing career).

Screen Shot 2015-03-19 at 10.03.13 PM
Yes, my mother liked to dress us all the same.

However, there is one thing, that should I stumble upon a time machine, I would like you to alter and that is how you treat two people.

Two people that, while mostly insignificant to you at this point in your life (when they’re not being complete and utter pains in the ass), happen to be your sisters.

Ugh. I know, right? Wrong.

Maybe it’s all the “Frozen” we’ve watched that has us thinking about this, but both these girls who take equal turns pestering, annoying and infuriating you, eventually turn out to be two incredible women that we will be so thankful to have in our life.

“But wait,” you say. “They take all my stuff.”

Relax. It’s stuff. And years later you won’t really remember what they took. But you will remember the look on your sister’s face when you ripped that flower barrette out of her hair.

“They always start it.” Maybe. Maybe not. Yes, living in close quarters with one bathroom can cause some friction. But the physical closeness now will result in emotional closeness later. I promise.

“But the older one and I just don’t get along.”

Screen Shot 2015-03-19 at 10.07.35 PMSo work at it. Spend a little time with her. Teach her how to do her make-up but that she doesn’t need it to be beautiful and that she is worthy of being loved.

“And the younger one is just plain evil.”

She’s not evil. She’s thirteen. She will also turn out to be one of the sweetest people you know and later, when you two live together, you will become the best of friends.

Actually, you will become more than that, you will become sisters. And there is no stronger bond. So don’t take if for granted. Be kind to them. Appreciate them. And know how lucky you are to have both of them in your life.

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