My sister is my best friend. The best type of friend you can ever have. She’s 20 years younger, same gap between me and my mother so she might as well have been my daughter. The bond we have grows stronger with every year. I’m closest to her than to any of my other siblings…actually to any other family member.

Ever since she was just a little baby, she brought happiness into my heart. Dad used to buy her a lot of new clothes whenever he travelled and I used to love to dress her in all the different outfits and take pictures. She would just sit there smiling right into the camera lens and send warmth straight into my heart.

We are one another’s support system. We cheer one another for the successes and console one another in sad times. When I left my x-husband, she was one of the first people to know. Over the phone, with her miles and miles away at the time, at 15, she said, ‘I will support you whatever you decide to do!’ That’s my sister. I can’t imagine my life without her. My sister is so funny. Every now and then she’s got some funny accent going on or impersonation. She cracks me up. I can be very angry and she can with ease flip my mood around with her humor and light hearted-ness.

She was the prettiest baby girl and today she turns 20 years old. On her 20th, I’m just in a bit of disbelief mixed with denial. Where did the years go? How can she be 20 already? I still remember it like it was yesterday how she’d go round and round in her fancy little colorful dresses when she was but 4 or 5. Many a nights, I watched her fall asleep…literally….with her eyes slowly flickering as they got heavier with sleepiness then closing as she sinks into her dreams. I watched her sleep and kissed her soft little hands.

She was only 8 or 9 when we went to a palm reader in Rome. The old lady, with a strong accent tells my sister that she’s going to become rich and famous. There were no details. So that has been our thing ever since. I’d encourage her to do new things and try everything at least once, telling her that she never knows what it is that she’s going to love doing, that will end up making her rich and famous! Whatever it is, I’m going to support her all the way.

Even though we live apart on 2 different continents, we are closer than 2 peas in a pod. My sister…. to me, is my little guardian angel, and I wish the world had a lot more people with hearts as big as hers.

Happy Birthday Reem!

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