Straddling Ages

My sister’s birthday is July 15th. She is going to be 42 I
think. I have written about her before. She is different. Most people think
that she is way younger than she actually is. I think that she struggles
sometimes in social situations to know how to act so she takes cues from those
around her. She works at McDonald’s three days a week and takes the bus to and
from. She loves that job. She is a familiar face there and has many regulars.
She tells everyone everything. I am certain that people I do not know at all
know an awful lot about me. She is a rabid Mets fan who can get very very
touchy about them. She is sweet and shares stuff but she can also be a total

I watch her with my six year old son and my friend’s daughter who is a
bit older than that. My sister will play Old Maid with them or Uno and be
really happy about it. She will gladly find sticks with my son on the beach so
they can write messages in the sand. She sneakily picks up the picture books we
have checked out of the library and reads them with great enjoyment. She colors
the color-by-number pictures in my son’s activity book with zeal. But there are
times when I watch her and I think that she doesn’t let herself join in with
the kids. I asked her if she wanted to play with the legos with them and she
declined but sat there watching the two of them. I almost felt like she wanted
to but maybe felt like she shouldn’t. How hard it must be to struggle with
yourself like that. To know inside that she is “too old” to be doing these types
of things (she has a job, she takes the bus, she cooks pasta); these types of
things that bring her great joy.

To tell the truth I was unsure how my sister would be having my
rambunctious son around all the time, but so far, so good. We have been here
three weeks and he has yet to piss her off. He is respectful of her room as her
personal space. He is happy when she comes home from work and shows up at the
top of the bulkhead to join us for some late day beachiness. Then I think that
I am the problem. I tend to lump my sister in with “the kids” but she is an
adult, a decidedly kid-like adult, but an adult. Maybe my inability to decide
how to treat her is based on her inability to decide who she is. On the other
hand, who says she needs to have a rigid definition of herself? Perhaps a more
chameleon like persona fits her, one that lets her change to fit her
surroundings comfortably. I am proud of my sister. She is living her life to
the fullest extent of her ability. Not many people can say that, including

About nematomorph

Living like the rich and famous, splitting time between Hawaii and New York.
This entry was posted in Parenting and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Straddling Ages

  1. mauka-makai says:

    “She is living her life to the fullest extent of her ability. Not many people can say that, including myself.”

    sfam – your photos say otherwise.

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