SistersThere are two kinds of sisters:  those who are born into your family and those you invite to be family. I consider myself fortunate to have been blessed with both.

My “born” sister Sue is several years younger and truth be told, we didn’t always get along. I can remember leaving the house and my mother calling out, “Take Sue with you.” Begrudgingly we would leave the house together but I would walk really fast hoping she would not be able to keep up and go home. But she was a quick little bugger and she always caught up.

There must be some kind of sister torture code because over the years I’ve heard women share stories about telling their sisters they were adopted (guilty), telling their sisters the person they thought was a sister was really an alien ( guilty) but I NEVER helped Sue pack to run away from home. That was too far even for me.

Those sister crimes aside, I also remember sharing a bedroom and bunk beds. Sue would hang one foot over the side of the top bunk and ask me to rub her foot while I sang to her. Many a night she fell asleep that way.

I also remember taking her shopping after I’d landed my first job after college.  I’d deemed her winter jacket not nearly warm enough and wrote my very first check to pay for a down jacket and gloves. Over the years we’ve become much closer and she is the rarest kind of sister – both “born” and “invited.”

As an invited sister she joins the ranks of some remarkable women I’ve met over the years. Whether I see them once a week or once a year, conversation flows easily as if no time has passed. These are women who sometimes know me better than I know myself. They help when a man breaks my heart; when a boss is frustrating; when I’m not sure if the outfit really looks good on me. And they are there for those most important life events, like the passing of each of my parents.

The Bing Crosby movie White Christmas has two characters named the Haynes sisters. In the movie they sing a song called “Sisters.” Sue and I never learned all the words, but we would often sing the first part, “Sisters, sisters, there were never such devoted sisters….” much to our mother’s enjoyment. If you get a chance, check out the film clip. You can find it on You Tube:

And I hope it helps remind you of the born and invited sisters in your life.


  1. Val

    Very sweet commentary on Sisters.
    Can’t wait to see what’s up next!

  2. I am that sister

    i still remember that trip to the ski store. I wasn’t all that shocked that you were spending the better part of your check to make my life better. You’ve done things like that for all your family and friends since that day. The jacket was white with a diagonal light blue and silver stripe. The gloves alone were more than I made in a week at my part time job. That’s when I really knew you were a “grown up.” And I missed you terribly when you moved to Manhattan but loved walking to kings plaza on the weekends you returned to Brooklyn.


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