Older Sisters Will Understand This

by Hayley Stevens

My younger sister, Rachel, was born eighteen months after me. When my parents brought her home from the hospital, they placed her on the couch next to me and, as my family’s favorite story goes, I promptly shoved her off. My grandma, in a moment unlike any of us have ever seen from her, swan-dived from her seat and literally caught my sister in her arms. My parents still talk about her incredible out-of-body save.

Despite my early and potentially deadly problems with my sister, we have spent twenty-one years together through thick and thin ever since. Still, Rachel and I could not be more different: Rachel likes the Kardashians and studies Criminal Justice. I read books like it's my job, and could watch Doctor Who all day long. Rachel (or Ray, as my family has always called her) is honestly way cooler than me. She’s honest, open, blunt, kind, and just plain awesome.

These days, we live nearly a thousand miles away from each other. I love being Rachel’s older sister, and I love that she is my little sister. We have had a lot of ups and downs over these years; a lot of fights, hugs, and tears. On this Sister's Day, here are a few key things I have learned from my sister. I'm pretty sure they're pretty universal, because there are some things only we older sisters can truly understand.

Sometimes, you let her dress like you

(That would be us.)

but either way, Your Clothes Always Got Stolen

The second I left for college, I noticed a few familiar pieces in her latest Facebook photos. At Thanksgiving, I returned home to discover my closet empty.

she always Got Away With Everything

When we were growing up, I always got in trouble the second I did anything to my sister. She rarely got in trouble — ever.

You Have Jokes That No One Else Can Understand

My parents seem to think we’re speaking another language, but Rachel and I truly understand each other. Always encourage the weirdness.

You now know you Are Not Her Teacher — Or Her Parent

Yes, your Sister Is Her Own Person

My sister and I are not quite yin and yang, but I love her for her differences. She's way more stylish than me, and she has a ton of very different friends. I just watch and learn.

but you Can Sometimes still Be A Little Protective

The idea of someone hurting my sister or breaking her heart makes me want to punch a wall (I’m not typically violent, I swear). I would probably fly to Boston just to yell at a boy if he hurts her.

You're so Proud Of her

My sister is actually very tough and can take care of herself. But, in the event that she needs me, I will be there, no questions asked. I recommend you do the same.

and she Is That Voice of conscience Inside Your Head

If I’m going to do something stupid, I always think to myself “what will Rachel think when she hears about this?” It might be odd to admit, but sometimes your little sister will know best.

...though she still Annoys You More Than Anyone In The World

When I was in college, she tweeted a photo of our shared car on a tow-truck with the simple caption “oh shit.” It’s a little sister’s job to piss you off to no end.

You Spend Ridiculous Amounts Of Money On her

No birthday gift will ever be good enough for your sister. None. I bought my sister tickets to Beyonce and Jay Z’s On the Run tour, and it still didn’t feel like enough. There is no such thing as a perfect gift for your sister. Again, just accept it.

and most of all, You'll always Love Her

No matter what.

Happy Sister's Day!

Images: Tumblr; Giphy; Stevens