I love my sister more than coffee

sisters

While all of my family has impacted me deeply, today’s post is about my sister. She lives in Philly and I’m in California so our contact consists of random phone calls, letters, texts and email. We talk more around holidays, anniversaries, birthdays, and her kids’ important life moments. Regardless of that, we always pick up where we left off and can make each other laugh or cry. My sister can make my heart burst with joy and she can open that vulnerable edge in me. I have to admit, there’s nothing like a sister.

Pam Tanya Jerry

My bro, big sis and me

Pam is older than me by 14 months. Sometimes I think my surprise entry into the world took away from the awesomeness of her gentle soul. But then again, I like to think we were meant to grow up so close – a sort of yin and yang.

Sharing and Difference
Pam and I shared everything from when I was born until I was 13. We shared a room (bunk beds!), clothes, toys, books…everything. Though we were close, best friends in fact, we were also quite different. Pam excelled in music becoming proficient in violin and piano, participating in American Music Abroad and playing the lead in the high school musical. Meanwhile, I couldn’t even make the cut for the elementary school choir. Shoot, I was simply happy being 5th chair sax in concert band because that, at least, wasn’t last chair. The truth of the matter was that I loved listening to music; just not playing it.

Me, on the other hand, excelled in sports. I was a silly-good short stop and was the captain of my HS softball and basketball teams. While Pam did play softball with me, she eventually dropped out to focus on her musical adventures. We grew into our own separate passions and it worked for us.

BandTanyaandPam
Me and Pam in our marching band attire, 1986

Compromise
Though we ran in different social circles as teens, we continued to share aspects of our lives. The biggest thing was working together. It was just easier trying to manage getting rides or driving when we worked at the same place. We started at a grocery store together, me as cashier and her behind the deli counter. Then she moved on to selling vacuum cleaners door-to-door and was able to get me a position as well. Our last job together was at an egg factory. College was what kept us apart and as we graduated and developed our own lives, we moved to different parts of the US.

1999PamandTanya
Pam helped me move from Connecticut to California in 1999 – the beginning of that road trip.

Friends
Because of my sister, I’ve developed a deep appreciation of all women and their diverse talents, wants, and challenges. Heck, I am fortunate enough to have a sister who is a fantastic person. She is brilliantly smart yet a bit gullible about real life at the same time. Those are two elements that I can’t help but mess with. She was my first victim of sarcasm. Over and over again. While I would mess with her, I knew she would still love me no matter what. She has a warm, kind heart, is quick to forgive and feels deeply. She is a gentle spirit, laughs easily and usually goes with the flow. She has always been there for me and calls me on my shit too. She does like to get things done and get them done well so don’t mess with her if she’s on a mission. I see my sister in her kids and am grateful that they have wonderful parents who love them deeply. Every connection I have with a woman, I see my sister, the camaraderie we had, the secrets we shared, the giggles at bedtime, and my own special friend.

Today is my sister’s birthday and I am simply grateful to have the best sister ever.

Chest bump to sisters everywhere.

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4 thoughts on “I love my sister more than coffee

  1. Tanya,
    Wow, it’s amazing how well you capture our time together as sisters. It’s such a special bond and I can remember so many things from growing up together, it warms my heart. You are truly a beautiful, amazing woman, I’m so proud and lucky to be able to call you my sister. You bring happiness to so many people and you deserve the most happiness life can offer. Can’t wait to see you again and share some time together.
    Love you so much,
    Pam

  2. Tanya,
    I love your blog post! I feel the love you have for your big sister. She is still your best friend and that makes me happy 😍😘
    Love,
    Mom

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