Happy Birthday Caris!

Today is my sister, Caris’s, birthday. I’ve celebrated her on this blog before, but since I love her more today than I did when I wrote that, and I didn’t get to attend our family’s birthday dinner for her, I figured another blog would be in order.

There really is nothing else like having a sister. To have someone you’ve known your entire life, whose seen your ups and downs, endured your various clothing choices, who you’ve fought with, shared friends with (not always willingly), attended dances and football games with (separately, of course), knows all the ins and outs of your love life, spends every holiday with you, cries with you, who you’ve hurt and made fun of, who cracks you up and thinks you are hilarious — man there is nothing else like it. It makes both of us want to have at least two girls if we have daughters so they never have to live without a sister.

I’ve always really loved Caris. I was the little sister that wanted to be her and do everything she did. Now that we’re older, I don’t try to be her but I still really love and admire her. She is such a unique combination of qualities and attributes. She is her own person and doesn’t care about what anyone thinks of her – yet she’s not insensitive or uncaring of the way others feel or the way she treats them. She likes to stick out and be unique — yet she doesn’t feel the need to draw attention to herself unnecessarily and is happy to share the spotlight. She is one of the least insecure people I know, which also makes her one of the most free people I know — yet she’s not arrogant or boastful or conceited. She’s hilarious but loves to laugh with other people too. She’s intelligent, can hold her own in a debate, and doesn’t get worked up or overly emotional (ah hem, like some people) when people disagree with her. She loves her church, loves her friends, loves our family, and is intentionally selfless in her love.

I don’t know why, but I’ve come to love my sister more over this past year than any year before. I really can’t explain it. But I think it has to do with some of the trials and joys we have shared together. Caris and her husband Dan came down to spend the weekend with me last fall and meet the guy I was dating at the time. They shared in my joy and walked with me through the heartbreak when that ended. In the midst of that Caris got pregnant and we shared in the joy of that together and also the uncertainty when my brother-in-law found out his company was shutting down last winter and had to start looking for another job. We walked together as my parents faced their first year of my dad on dialysis. She became my refuge when family conflict would come up, lending me her eyes to see more clearly in those situations. We tanned and prepared for her baby to come when I went home for the summer, and after she had Indy being her sister got even better! Getting to be in the hospital room with her shortly after he was born, getting to be an aunt for the first time, getting to care for their little family in the weeks after he was born was so fun for me. It was then that I learned that service is not burdensome when it’s motivated my love and began to plead with the Lord to make me love my friends & girls in my dorm as much as I loved them.

All that to say, I love my sister very much. I wish all of you could be so fortunate to have a sister like her.

Happy Birthday, Care!

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