Today is my little sisters birthday. Her name is Alina and she turned 19 today. Being that she is younger than me and lives far from me, I have been wondering what would be the appropriate gift for her. So I went shopping. If I know anything, it's that she loves being glamed up, with curls in her hair and high heels, she can pull off the look like a supermodel. Confident, stunning, and graceful. She has a humble heart, a thankful attitude, and kind spirit that is always willing to give or to help. In my eyes she would win any beauty pageant out there and I love her to pieces.
But as much as she loves show stopping beauty, at the end of the day, she loves to unwind with sweaters and sweatshirts. So I found a gift that was well suited for the down to earth, side of her. I wrapped it. Addressed it. And then looked at it.
As much as I enjoy gift giving, it just wasn't enough. What I wanted was for her to see how important she is to me, how valuable she is to our family, and how honored I am to have her as my little sister. All of a sudden, the box seemed empty.
So I thought about us. I thought about all the times she just wanted time with me. The way her innocent, young eyes looked up to me and as an older sister and I just never had enough time to give her. How fast time flew by since then, how much had changed since childhood, and how much I wanted to just sit and finally give her all the time I had.
So I did. I packed the kids in the car, and decided that I was going to take my sister out. Even if she couldn't really be here with me. Even if it looked crazy while doing it, I was going to pretend she was right beside me.
At first we went to a yogurt place. It was chaotic, crazy, and the candles didn't light up. Sorry Alina, somehow in my mind it seemed easier. But don't worry, the kids enjoyed the cheesecake, red velvet yogurt to the last drop. Derek picked cheesecake, because some how some where he remembers you making it. Jenny chose cake, because it's a birthday. Then they loaded the bowl up with berries, brownies, cherries, gummy bears, caramel, and sprinkles.... Of course! We stuck 19 candles in, and sang until we turned blue.
I hope you enjoyed it as much as they did. I also hope that all those toppings are your favorite! The video on the other hand was a mess, so we took you out for dinner where you enjoyed macaroni and cheese with meatballs, french fries, and Pepsi. After a fantastic meal, happy tummies, and hopefully happy hearts, we lite up another candle, sang another song and wished more wishes.
Happy birthday, little sis. I hope you feel loved today, I hope I made you feel special, and I hope you feel like your the most important girl in the world!
My wish to you is that you begin this next season of your life with wisdom and triumph. You have seen the mistakes that I have made, witnessed them almost first hand. You have lived through the tears that were shed for our brother and then waited on the miracles of prayer. You have had to see more, experience more, and hear more than any of us. For being 19, you hold more years on you. You have also had to be there for each one of us, kindly accepting our ways but cautiously walking on your own. I love how much you enjoy your privacy, it's never loud, it's never gloating, it's simply escaping from the chaos we put on your shoulders. Not every one can bear the burdens you have had to and I know that you were meant to be the youngest for a reason. The reason that we need peace and you bring that, we need kindness and you show that, we need loyalty and you are always there. So thank you, from he bottom of my grateful heart. You will walk the path of triumph, I can feel it:)