a letter to my twenty-three year old sister


Liv, You are the truest friend I have ever known. You've seen me in every circumstance - the good, the bad, and the very ugly - and still, you love me. Thank you for that.

I know I'm your little sister, but can I say how proud I am of you? Because I am proud. So very, very proud. When people ask if we are sisters, I say with pride, "Yes, we sure are. That is my sister." My beautiful sister.

I didn't give you enough credit while we were growing up. I'm stubborn and was trying to figure out who I am, and I never told you how much you influenced my life. How much you still do.

You have this way of making me feel so special - like all those times when I was in a play or musical and you would try so very hard to fill as many seats in that audience with people that I love. Or when I overhear you tell someone, "I can't wait until Aliza writes a book someday" - and I know you believe in me.

And your kindness for others overwhelms me sometimes. When we found out about Mom's cancer, you immediately brought her flowers. It was your idea to make her an entire care package filled with comforting things you know she'd love. When the youth kids come over to your home, you always have food ready for them. You constantly open up your house for people, and I look at you with wide eyes and wonder: how do you do it?

You are strong. You are fiercely loyal. You are so, incredibly lovely. And you are my sister. My absolute best friend in this giant world.

Thank you, Olivia, for all you have done for me. Thank you for your honesty, your support, your kindness, your generosity, your unfailing love.

I could never stop loving you. You are my favourite friend.

Happy birthday, my beautiful twenty-three year old sister.

My love to you, forever and always.