raina sleeping

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raina sleeping
raina sleeping,
originally uploaded by Marusula.

I love my sister. A lot. But there have been times when we haven’t gotten along well. For the first 15 years of her life, she was a little hard to live with (I left for college around then, and haven’t lived full time with her since. 3,000 miles distance has improved our relationship immeasurably). She had such a demanding and forceful personality that she tended to suck up all the energy and attention in any space she inhabited. Most of the time, she would be such a ball of will and power that it was hard to approach her during waking hours, let alone give her a hug or kiss.

But when she slept, she went through a personality transformation. She shifted from wild to quiet, and the space when she was unconscious was when I was able to express my big sister love for her. I would crawl into her bed with her a few moments each night, while my mom stood by, and cover her face with kisses. Her hot, sweaty two or three year old body temporarily stalled, I could finally get as close as I wanted.

For years, Raina was completely unaware of this nightly tradition of mine. I told her a couple of years ago, and she was pretty surprised. But then she gave me a great big old hug and kiss. It’s nice, I don’t have to wait for her to be sleeping to get my sister love these days.

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