Duane and I just read the book, “Wonder.” We also rented the movie and watched it with our 4 year old, after Little Sis went night-night. Then we got to go visit a big school, just like in the movie. Big Sis does a show-n-tell presentation every week at our homeschool co-op class, so she was excited to see Dada do his presentation about “Wonder!”
Big Sis got to sit at a real desk with the big kids, just like Auggie in the movie. She would even raise her hand and ask questions too.
Duane shared about his childhood, and travel to Asia. I shared about falling in love with him. And we talked about the birth of our 2nd daughter.
At some point, Big Sis raised her hand and asked, “when was I born?”
We missed that part of our story, because our presentation was about Treacher Collins Syndrome (TCS). We rather unintentionally said to Big Sis, “this is not about you.” As Via said, in Wonder, “Auggie is the sun, he is the center of our universe and we all revolve around him.” Ouch!
It’s Not Easy Being the Sister
When I was growing up, my older sister was in a wheel chair. Everyone in our community knew who she was and was praying for her to be healed. And I was just her little sister. Instead of people saying, “Hi Becky, how are you doing?” They’d say, “Hi, how is your sister doing?” So I always felt extra compassion for the siblings. Living in the shadow. Not wanting to bother parents with my problems, because they were small problems compared to what my sister was going through.
When we found out that our 2nd daughter has TCS, I immediately felt bad for her Big Sister. Realizing, this new baby would require a lot from us. The world would no longer revolve around Big Sis.
At first, I was intentional, wanting to make sure Big Sis still felt loved and got quality time with us. But apparently life took over, to the point that we left Big Sis out of our family presentation.
After I read “Wonder,” I read, “Auggie & Me,” which includes the story of Christopher. He had been Auggie’s friend since they were babies, but then moved away. Several times, Christopher says, “it’s not easy to be friends with Auggie.” It is also not easy to be the sister. Friends get to choose their friends. I chose Duane. But my daughter did not get to pick her family, or choose to be the Big Sister. This is the family and the life she was given.
You can’t choose your family, but you can choose your friends
I could not ask for a better little person as my first daughter. I am so thankful I got to start mother-hood with a “normal” baby. She was an easy, happy baby. Now she is growing up to be so smart and funny. Big Sis is a born leader and a teacher. If I want Little Sis to learn to say or sign a word, she will always copy what her sister is saying or doing.
When they play together, Little Sis says, “dats greem.” Big Sis corrects her, “no, that is blue.” And then helps Little Sis make the sign, “Put your hand like this. No, 4 fingers together. Now tuck your thumb. Not like that. Do this. Now that’s a B. Now shake it. That means Blue. Good job! High 5!”
Then Big Sis turns to me and says, “Mama, get your phone and take a picture and say, ‘awe, you are so cute’ ok? Sister, come here, hug?”
Little sis responds, “O-tay. Heg.”
I love how much our girls love each other, and I am so thankful that they have each other.