In honour of International Women's Day I'm writing this blog in celebration of women and the special bond of sisterhood. I wanted to share an excerpt of letter I wrote to my little sister as she set off to live in Australia for a year. This is my greatest big sister advice about how to live the best life ever.
I started by telling you about my own experience in the world of abuse. I did this because those experiences are what helped me understand the importance of healing in light of a frightening situation. These women -- our sisters -- need our support and understanding to heal. But we cannot forget the men. At some point we are going to have to turn around and help heal this man. Many will think he is undeserving, but he too experienced trauma in his life which he has had to cope with. I'm not talking about forgiveness, I'm talking about compassion.
For those of you who know me personally, you'll know that I'm in a pretty serious relationship with Detroit. Detroit needs to make a call for actors, writers, artists, comedians, photographers, to work on a sense of community through laughter, joy and creative expression! It's not a solution but it certainly wouldn't hurt. Detroit needs a younger sibling to make sure that they don't get swallowed up in their own sadness.
You do not always get along. Sam told me approximately 44 times this morning that P.J. popped her green balloon. P.J. sometimes resorts to creating Mega-bloks jail cells to contain Sam. Alex pulls Sam's hair. Sam pulls back. But you get more pure joy from each other than you get from water balloons, McDonald's fries and the iPad combined. Which is saying a lot.
I knew several things. That I would finally meet my sister. And finally, confirmation of what I had known for two decades: my sister was also sexually abused by our father. Knowing something to be true and finally staring truth in the face is overwhelming. I would never feel the same as I did before that Wednesday morning.
I recently returned to Madrid from a trip to Portugal with my sister. I think we both felt a little bit guilty about our lack of interest in the historical aspects of the Portugal experience. I mean, how effed up is it to stand in a palace originally built in the middle ages and say, "meh" to yourself? But I had to own the privilege to get over the guilt. Instead of pretending to enjoy what wasn't working, My sister and I spent the second half of our trip doing all the aimless non-touristy touristy things that we love. And this is what made Portugal perfect for us.