Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Maria, the last fourteen in pieces

My baby sister. 14 years old. Graduating from 8th grade. Moving on to Holynames. All very huge milestones in life, and especially in the Jesse Family. She's joining the ears pierced club, she's getting "grandma's bustline" that we are eternally grateful for, and she's becoming one of the Jesse Women. A great group, a tall group, and a proud clan. And as she is learning great things about life, I am continually learning new things about her. Because we don't live in the same house or even in the same city, it breaks my heart a little bit each day to know that I am not learning these things day by day, but having them all come to the surface on a weekend trip home is almost kind of better. All the more exciting and touching. One thing I've witnessed so far this weekend is that she is absolutely adored by so many people. Not that I ever doubted or not known that, but to see it come pouring out in letters and hugs and palanka's and requests to attend her graduation is pretty amazing. And if you even knew how slappable her little tushy was, you would adore her too. Also, she is a really good writer. And I mean really good writer. Full of (to me) 'cute by hindsight' teenage angst and childhood trauma, she's writes a little bit older than her years and I am very very proud of that.

Another aspect of our lives as sisters is how much of our existence is reflected by our relationship with the Taylor family. To be seen as daughters and sisters by them is so clear in Ed's sudden yet biting remarks that leave everyone with wide open grins and Sue's 'bordering on anger' eyes when she insists on our intelligence and beauty. And the lasting reminder of my sister, and my family, is the way in which Evan and Maria will never stop laughing. They laugh constantly, without provocation, and listening to themselves giggle apparently is the funniest part. In our eyes, they will never ever ever cease to be the giggling girls in the back of the car. Regardless of age or distance, the Jesse's and the Taylors will remain a constant reminder of my baby sister, of her laughter and her intelligence and of our bond.

"When I am with my girls, we laugh and laugh and laugh, like a long spaghetti noodle, floating down your throat, with what seems like no end"
-Maria Kathleen Jesse


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