It’s time to get a little personal, but I’m not sure exactly where to start. Bear with me because I’m about to get weepy as I try to collect my thoughts. My beautiful, sweet sister married her best friend this weekend. Watching Erin marry Nate, who is such an honest and wonderful man, pretty much sent me into a hilarious emotional crying mess all weekend long. As I watched her vow to rush to the emergency room, and cuddle with Nate in every hospital bed, for every bone he breaks (side note: Nate seriously injures himself a lot), my cheeks hurt because I couldn’t stop smiling. My memories with my family and all of our friends from Saturday make my heart swell. My sister’s wedding was one of the best days of my life.
I absolutely have a whole new appreciation for the work I do and how important my job is. I need to back up for a second, though, to brag a bit about my family and tell you how special my sister is to me.
My family has always been tight knit. Though I never lived very close to much of my extended family, we all make an effort to get together once a year or so. My parents are so wonderful and did such a good job raising their three kids that it makes me nervous to have kids of my own someday because I don’t think I’ll be able to do as good of a job. My dad has worked hard his whole life to provide for his family. He moved us around the world and always made us laugh and entertained us with his mischievous sense of humor. My mom is beautiful, creative, and has always fought hard for her kids to make sure we had exactly what we needed, even if it meant her sacrificing her own needs. I have a twin brother, who I like to joke about, and tell everyone he got all the good genes as we shared a room in the womb because he is so smart, so funny, and so incredibly good at everything he does.
And then there is Erin. My sister has been my best friend for my entire 26 years of life. Growing up, I was just her annoying little sister that would follow her in circles around our parent’s kitchen because I knew if I left her for a second she would do something cool without me. Just like any older sister would, she often liked to torture her two younger siblings. One time she made us hide in a kitchen cabinet for hours because she told us there was a time bomb in the house – when really the ticking we heard was just an egg-timer she had wrapped in a towel to scare us. Despite her obligatory older sibling tricky ways, Erin always looked out for us and has always been a caring, nurturing, and very considerate person. Every Christmas or Easter morning, she knew that Santa and/or the Easter bunny would be scared off if we were to see them unloading presents. As an older-sister she felt like it was her duty to be the first one to scout the downstairs to make sure they had already left and our presents were safe and secured. She looked out for my safety too, like when she would tie all my stuffed animals’ tails in knots to make sure they wouldn’t wrap around my neck and strangle me in my sleep. She would let me sleep in her room almost every night so we could stay up late and talk, and I often awoke with her finger under my nose making sure I was still breathing.
As we’ve grown up she has remained my best friend – she’s always been the first person I go to when I need advice, have gossip to share, or just needed someone to talk to. I’m so proud of the person she has become – so smart, beautiful, and strong with such determination in everything she does. I look up to her now just as much as I did in those days following her in circles around the kitchen and I know I always will. I’m the person I am today largely because of her.
I didn’t mean to write such a novel, but it was important for me to put that all out there. The older we get, the busier our lives are, and it gets more and more difficult for everyone to be in one place at one time. No matter how much we want it to, life doesn’t ever seem to slow down. The moments we do have together are so special and precious. I’m going to cherish the photographs Leah took on Saturday for the rest of my life because all of our favorite people got to be in one place to celebrate two of the best people I have ever known, Erin & Nate.
I’m not sure how to end this, except for with pictures, so I’ll leave you with some of their engagement pictures I took earlier this summer.