Why My 8 Year-Old Sister Is My Best Friend

I smile because you’re my sister. I laugh because there is nothing you could do about it.

I always get weird looks when I say my sister and I are 11 years apart. Not because the age difference is slightly ludicrous, but because I talk about her as if she’s been my best friend my entire life. I can often tell that people wonder how I could possibly be so close to an 8 year-old. I like to think my sister and I have a special relationship that very few people get the pleasure of experiencing. When my parents pull the classic “You can go if you take your sister” card, it doesn’t phase me one bit. She is the perfect backseat rider. She laughs at all my jokes, sings the other half of duets in the car, doesn’t care where we’re going as long as we’re together, and picks the best mid-day lunch destinations. But in all seriousness, I love being a big sister to this little human. She is my best friend. Here’s why:

  1. She’s my biggest fan. If you know me at all, you know that I get involved in everything under the sun. Sports, theater, student government, you name it. One of the best parts of doing something new is that my sister is always just as enthusiastic about my extracurriculars as I am. I could always count on her to be at every basketball game and sit front row at all my theater productions (even if it meant she sat alone). I gave her shout-outs in my theater playbooks just because I knew she would be looking for it. She sleeps with a UTK blanket every night, picks out all my gifts in my sorority colors, and even sends me college care packages. She’s always looking out for me and is my biggest supporter.

2. She keeps my feet on the ground. Having a sibling significantly younger than you naturally forces you to hold yourself to a higher standard. You know they look up to you more than anyone else in the world, so you always have to be sure that you’re setting the right example. Instead of hanging out with friends after school, I’d pick her up from elementary school and take her to get a slushy. Instead of going out on Friday nights, I’d take her to see the newest animation movie. I never HAD to do these things, I wanted to. Having my sister around forced me to grow up a lot faster than my peers, and I’m thankful for that.

3. She loves me regardless of how mean I am to her. It doesn’t matter if I kick her out of her own room, change the TV channel in the middle of her show, take the last popsicle, or make her throw away my trash. She will literally be rubbing my feet and ask, “Rara, do you want to be a chaperone for my school field trip?” She loves me through all the crap I put her through and I don’t thank her enough for it.

4. She holds our family together. The entire dynamic of our family changed for the better when my sister came along. She forces us to have Family Game Night, brings the magic and spirit to every holiday, and is the main reason we ever go to Disneyland. The sun seems to shine a little bit brighter whenever she’s around. It’s safe to say we need her more than she needs us.

5. She inspires me just as much as I inspire her. My sister looks up to me more than I believe anyone else ever will. In her eyes, I could do no wrong. What she doesn’t understand is that I strive to be like her everyday. Although we are different, she possesses many traits that I admire. I wish I had her patience, compassion and selflessness. My sister has one of the purest souls and warmest hearts I’ve ever seen. She has a way of making you feel loved without even trying. I love watching her grow up, and I’m so proud to be her big sister.

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