I do not see as well without her. I do not hear as well without her. I do not feel as well without her. I would be better off without a hand or a leg than without my sister. Then at least she would be here to mock my appearance and claim to be the pretty one for a change.
Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circus
We are the very same two people who at age 13 and 15 thought that we couldn’t like each other, because something that resembled a descendant of the Devil in the form of a sweet looking child was not something to play with, but to avoid.
We are the very same two people who threw and received a remote control to the head while being babysat, and, around the age of 5, hid a new rose pink silk nightdress behind the headboard of our parent’s bed in jealousy because they didn’t get one.
Silence took over as our mum drove back to Etam in Lowestoft to tell the assistant that the only possible reason for this missing nightdress was that they were left behind. Consequently, mum was given a replacement to which when the discovery of the hidden nightdress came about she had to go back to Etam with a rather embarrassing story at hand.
We are the very same two people who aimed, fired, and failed to punch the other in the face after being pinned successfully up against an oak bookcase by a leg wedged in the midst of a lady cave, leaving legs dangling scrambling for the floor.
I went home for Christmas ‘15, though, and I realised how lucky I was to have her. Odd, I thought. What is this emotion of sisterly love?
Sophie and I on Southwold beach NYE
This person who I had rediscovered is similar to me, but with these qualities that I lack. It is as though these qualities were put aside in the womb for when mum had her next child, and I was simply blessed with good looks 😉
I discovered these gorgeous qualities in her, such qualities as the deepest of love for her family and the ability to express it with affection, as well as having the warmest of hearts, when we had our first trip away as just the two of us. Sisters on the road to London.
No matter how many times mum invited herself, we said no. Like the nice children that we are.
I was 25 and she was 23. We took a two day adventure to London, went to Chelsea for brunch, and shopped along Bond Street giving advice to one another on the important things, such as “that dress makes you look like you need a shower,” and “you shouldn’t have experienced not wearing a bra for the first time today. It’s an English winter’s day, you knob. You could knock someone’s eye out.”
We had one of the most amazing nights out in London enjoying the company of new people and dancing as though it was our last chance to dance. The German stag party followed us to Tiger Tiger where we exchanged our mythical ‘knowledge of the London night scene’ (we are from Norfolk…) for drinks, thereby saving ourselves a fortune.
It’s surprising how a new found confidence creeps up on you when you have a martini in your hand and your sister by your side who makes you feel like a whole. It’s a different kind of whole to the whole that ‘your other half’ makes you feel.
We laughed all of the way to Burger King around 1am before I passed out in the hotel with burger in my mouth. Sophie went on to record herself putting her finger up my nose with one hand while trying to get the burger out of my mouth with the other, and subsequently wetting herself with laughter.
You may think well this sounds like a standard night out with my friends! There is, however, just something different about the way you interact with others when you’re with your sister. You know that what you say won’t be judged and that if you say something that you find funny she too will find it funny, even if no one else does. This is because you share the same weird sense of humour.
Quite simply, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. We are half of the same person, descendants of Heidi. We are likely to be thinking the same thing, because our chromosomes and brain cells are part of the same gene pool.
It is quite the revelation when questionable, controversial, simple, words come out of our mouths and we say, “I was literally just thinking that exact same thing.” Or, “that is just something that I would say.” Other non-sister people would perhaps say, “ah, yes, but no.”
Sisters share stories where the emotions that were involved don’t need to be defined, because we already know the emotions she felt. The conversations that sisters have are secrets, non-sensical, and sometimes serious. Sisters plot unrealistic, thought-provoking, fantastical endeavours while drinking wine, cocktails and tequila that if only the glasses could talk would anyone else know why they are laughing so hard.
I look forward to hearing from her, seeing her, picking her up from work, and spending everyday with her. With all of the components taken from the quote at the beginning – she really makes up the other half of me.
Life is fuelled with more life now that Sophie is living with me in New Zealand. She might just be my ticket home to England.