After watching Robin Williams in "What Dreams May Come" I began to wonder what my beloved friends and family would say at my funeral. I know very twisted, but you never really know how a person truly feels about you.
I've never considered myself a role model or a muse or even an inspiration to others. It wasn't until a couple of days ago I came across a paper that my younger sister wrote on our old computer that my view on my life, my relationship with my friends and family changed. My sister Sarah had lived with us while going to college and wrote this following paper, that brought me to tears, made me smile and made me think.
An Inspirational Influence
I learned so much in the past year just reflecting on my life and the lives of the ones I care about. Doing so I try not waste time or take anyone or anything for granted. My sister was a big impact on me in coming to this realization that many may think is simple, yet I do not see many who actually live their lives this way. Saying your going to do something is far different from actually doing it and understanding why you are doing it. I can now understand why the little things in life are so important. What I love most about having a strong sister is that I have a standard to meet and I know what is possible in this world. My sister has made me see what a real woman and mother is, that I can have a voice, that I can move forward, and that the determination of a strong-minded woman is undeniable in so many ways. She empowers me to look at myself and other women with so much praise and respect. Knowing she defeated cancer with a smile and lots of sarcastic and hilarious remarks helps me get through the day. She makes me wonder, why are girls and women not able to see that they can do more than just what others expect of them?
My sister, Melissa, is 14 years older than me. I have always called her Missy, I do not know where that nickname came from but it stuck. She’s old enough to be my mother and like older sisters, she acts like she is my mother. We have always been extremely close. As a child I didn’t live or really grow up with her but when I did get to see her I was always overly ecstatic. She was always a friend, sister, and motherly figure to me. She is this way probably because of the age gap but also because she has such a big family and has lots of brothers and sisters. She is my half sister so she has brothers and sisters that I am not related to. She has such a huge family, which explains why she has such a big heart. When it comes to her family she will do anything for us. Even if its just making me laugh when I am down. I recently moved in with my sister to transition and recover from a bad breakup and I do not think anyone could make a more positive impact on me or be more compassionate than she can. She has been through a lot of triumph, loss and everything in between. I can honestly say I am okay right now and I look forward to tomorrow because of the influence she has on me.
She is not scared to speak her mind and stand up for what she feels she deserves. Everyone should be able to express them self without hesitation. Missy was able to articulate this idea to me. My father is a man who was raised with the belief or just adopted the idea that sometimes another’s voice is not as important as his, because he is a man and the provider of the household. My father did not appreciate my sister for being so opinionated and outspoken on any and everything and the fact that she is a woman made it worse. She has always demanded respect and will put up with nothing less than that. She has made me see that even if I am shy and soft spoken my opinion is valuable even if it is only to show that someone cannot shut me up. I love him for making me who I am but I appreciate my beautiful sister for making my words feel powerful.
Melissa not being able to have a child angers me when I see a young girl who cannot and or just chooses not to take care of their child because they simply have not matured, taken a step back and looked at what they have actually created. Not all women have that loving motherly instinct that comes naturally and makes a good mother. It is something that some women lack. I think the definition of a good mother or even parent can be misunderstood sometimes. I am not talking about being able to control their child, discipline, and support or provide for their child. What makes a good mother is someone who genuinely sees a child as a gift, makes a difference on that child and loves them. I believe my sister has that ability and more. I know this because if she cares so much about her little sister who is an adult, imagine the love she could give to a baby. When I witness a pregnant teenager at a party drinking and smoking a month after my sister has gone through the riggers of cancer and a hysterectomy at 35 I cannot do anything but feel anger for her.
I can only take the positive out of the negative things that I have experienced and grow from them. I can see how the experiences in life mold me into the person that I am and instead of being a product of my environment I take an inspirational influence and use it to become a better person. One day I just would like to accomplish every goal that I have set for myself and say to my sister “I was able to do this because of the impact you have had on me.” “Thank you for everything you have done for me and thank you for being there when no one else was.”
So I hope that whenever I do pass; she reads this beautiful paper she wrote for a class.
Me @ 16yrs old and my sister Sarah @ 2yrs old
us about a year ago goofing around...