Happy Day, Auntie Em!

Today is the birthday of my elder sister Emily, a.k.a. Auntie Em. It is also the day she officially completed and bade adieu to her Major Research Project, finishing her Masters in Language, Culture, and Teaching.

Emi is a special gal. She is full of love and complicated thoughts and stress and nostalgia and joy and sorrow. She is beautiful and smart. She is generously thoughtful, the kind of person who makes a homemade card to say thank you for something… and then the card is so lovely you want to thank her back. She is an ardent knitter, reader, walker, cycler, and conversationer. She also loves her nephews and niece with a fervour and investment that rival those of a parent.

Happy birthday, sweet sister! And congratulations!!

I know this course was a tough row to hoe, especially the big-ass paper. And that, despite your passion for the topic of ESL teaching and cultural differences in classrooms, the research was not as fulfilling as you’d imagined. Still, I hope you will look back and remember the good parts – your better profs, the interesting conversations with fellow students, and time spent reading the literature you found most fascinating.

Also. I have something else to say. I just want you to know that, although I know it’s temporary, and although sometimes sharing a kitchen can get dicey (ha! get it?), and although you may be, on some level, “waiting for your real life to begin”, it has been many kinds of awesome sharing a household with you.

I’m glad you were there for when we brought our babies home, and for the time when we didn’t.

I’m glad we’ve been able to have so many fun family meals and games, in between all the social gallivanting you do. 🙂

I hope E will be able to remember being ensconced in pillows in your room, having dance parties and leafy nests and eyeshadow, playing with flashlights and balls of yarn and annoying Japanese alarm clocks. Thank you for taking jillions of photos and footage of him being his little self, and for taking an active role in his education, literary and musical and innumerable otherwise.

I know I will look back on this time as a golden era, a cozy time when my babies were babies, when we learned all about parenting them together, when we watched in wonder as they did the amazing things they do. I wish every mom were lucky enough to have a sister on the premises – not just for company or for another set of eyes and hands, but also for a fresh wellspring of patience when a mama is at her wits’ end. I’m so grateful for the times you’ve appeared magically when things aren’t going well, swooped in and kept your cool in the face of a maddening toddler/preschooler.

I hope you know we love you a lot. I hope you have loved this golden era too. And I hope your dreams come true – preferably this year. Well, as soon as is convenient, anyway.

three sisters in a bed
Mini-Di, Mini-Beth, and Mini-Em (long before they were Aunties).



11 thoughts on “Happy Day, Auntie Em!

  1. Mama says:

    All so true and wonderful! Lucky, lucky ladies, the 3 of you. And Ben is lucky, too! And I did have my sister around a lot when my first three kids were babies. Who taught you which was Foot A and which Foot B? Or read every kids’ book she bought you before choosing it? And so much more. I raise my glass to the clan – all sides and ages of it! And especially to Auntie Em today! Yay!

  2. Helen says:

    A belated happy happy to Emily. Birthdays are wonderful, and finishing major academic projects possibly even more wonderful. Di, this is such a great tribute to your big sis. It’s been an hono(u)r knowing both of you these 30-some-odd years (and Beth and Ben, too!). When we were little, I didn’t understand, but now I envy your sisterhood–it’s a special thing those of us without sisters will never fully experience, no matter how close our female friends or our brothers are.
    P.S. I know it’s been 31 1/2 years, but it sounds better to say 30-some-odd.

    • dilovelyadmin says:

      Thanks for this lovely comment, Helen! It’s been an hono(u)r knowing you and your family too. And for the record, I think we’ve been pretty darn close to sisterhood some of these years, in spite of the distance and the time between summers. I can’t remember ever bickering – or even really disagreeing – with you (which is something I did constantly with my sisters back in the day). I just think of marathon conversations about every-which-thing.

  3. Helen says:

    Oh, Di, I do miss our marathon conversations! Last time we saw each other I was too busy cooking and you were too busy mommying to really have that chance to sit down for a few hours. Perhaps we can find some time in 2013!

  4. emerge says:

    Helen, you are sister-y to me too! I loved getting to hang out with you last year at Camp, in spite of all the drama.

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