This post was one that I began many months ago, not anticipating then how time consuming a 20 minute slideshow would turn out to be. But for my wonderful sister, Leisel, it was worth it! For those of you who know this special friend of mine, you might enjoy going on a little journey with me starting at the earlier years of Leisel's life...if I can borrow just 20 minutes (or exactly 19 minutes and 49 seconds :) of your time for this tribute, I would invite you to pull up your coziest chair, pour yourself a mug of your favorite tea, and sit back and enjoy!
But first of all...An Introduction or a couple words to my Best Friend
It all started many years ago when a little two year old girl leaned over a wooden rocker to look at the little bundle cradled in her mother's arms. Little did she know then, as she stared down at that baby girl, that that little one would become her life long shadow. I imagine that she little thought of her as sharing in so many adventures with her. But only a few years after that, one could rarely be seen without the other.
One can define the word “Buddy” as being fast friends for life or as going everywhere together and sharing everything with each other. So it was for these two inseparable girls who shared everything, from adventures to trouble and laughter to secrets; from embarrassing moments to bedrooms and even at one time, toothbrushes (but that is a whole other story altogether :)
The two of them were so similar that lil’ sis even thought at times that they shared the same brainwaves. For they often said the same things at the same time, or knew exactly what the other one was thinking. They could even see the same thing at times and just by making eye contact with each other, the one would know exactly what the other one was thinking.
Whether it was because they were always matching, or the fact that they never went anywhere without the other, everybody thought of them as twins. And for lil’ sis, that was quite an honor (especially now that she’s mistaken as big sis's mother :)
Of course, like all little sisters, this one looked up to her big sis as her hero. She was the leader in all of their mischief, the one who always came up with the best play ideas, and the one that never got tired of her little shadow following her around. To lil’ sis, no one else knew how to make soup out of dandelion blossoms, or medicine out of mulberries. Only her big sister could convince her that the taste of rose petals was delicious or that mixing rosemary and water together was the perfect weight-loss tonic. And of course she always came up with the most imaginative ideas; at one time telling her little sister that if they twirled hard enough, they would end up in the land of Narnia or convincing her that if she stuck a fishhook into her earlobe, it would pierce her ears.
Lil’ sis wanted to be just like her big sis in everything: have the same tastes, hobbies, likes, and dislikes. Which was why it devastated this little girl when she learned that her big sis liked mayonnaise and she did not; and that though lil’ sis had acquired a taste for onions, her big sister still could not stand them.
These two girls did everything together; one as the instigator and the other as the eager participant. They shared in all of their adventures together; like the time when big sis and lil sis were exploring Piatt Lake together in kayaks, and big sis had the idea that they should venture farther out into a place that looked more daring. After encouraging her lil sis to go further and to summon up her adventuresome spirit, they soon found that their kayaks were stuck in the reeds. At another time, the two of them proudly came to an agreement that they would pull an all-nighter to study for and take a biology test that needed to be turned in....at about 12:00, they drowsily decided that it sounded better in theory than it was in reality, and they headed to bed.
Their best adventures though were found in the safety of their home. For with the right imagination, they could turn it into a wild exploration terrain to be walked blindfolded; the tile floors beneath the stairs became rippling seas, and the stairways became steep mountain cliffs. Secret messages could be sent by couriers using their own secret codes or their own dialect of “French”. Then, when the time came for bed, the sheets became tents, and the bed turned into a village. They created their own sign language for conversing when they were instructed not to talk; and they would carry their pillows on their heads when they were told not to lift their heads from their pillows.
Together, the two of them would write their own play scripts and enact them for the family. Big sis would turn into the dashing hero of the narrative, another would play his sweet bride, and somehow, lil’ sis always got stuck playing the Mother-in-law. :) A lot of their story ideas originated from their favorite movies. After seeing Les Miserable, big sis played the cruel jailer who went around branding lil’ sis. Or after watching A Tale of Two Cities, they decided to play guillotine…of course, the first time mommy caught them “lopping off each other’s heads”, they had to find a new game. At one time, big sis got the idea to play pick pocketing from Oliver Twist. Lil’ sis attended her pickpocket classes to become the great Dodger.
Big sis was the perfect balance for her crazy red-headed sister who tended to be a bit of a romanticizer. They had their differences, of course; one being a clean perfectionist and the other could rarely be seen without a pile, which big sis always called “junk”.
Since they shared in so many of their "first time experiences" together, it was hard when the little shadow had to stay behind and watch her big sister grow up and learn things that she could not yet do. Change, she hated the word because it meant that her best friend and she had less time together and more time apart. As they grew older and things changed lil’ sis had to watch her older sister move on with life, and they no longer shared in those “first time experiences”. Older sister was the first one to move up from High school Sunday class, or to go from Family camp girl’s crew member, to family camp girl’s crew leader. She was the first to graduate from school and then from piano lessons. Then, finally, she got busy with activities outside of the home. Even so, they would always spend as much of the free time that they had in each other’s company. When big sis moved into the den to do her schoolwork, lil’ sis moved in with her. Lil’ sis always found excuses to pop her head into wherever big sis was working and see if she wanted a cup of tea; which usually ended up in a full length “sister” conversation. :)
But big sis never got too old to act crazy with her little buddy, even if it looked silly to everyone else around them. It was because of this strong bond that big sis created and kept through the busyness of their lives that lil’ sis, to this day, considers big sis her closest friend.
Presenting the Slideshow:
"A friend loves at all times...." Proverbs 17:17