My sister and I, in fluorescents, in the 90s / Ghazaleh Golbakhsh
It feels like we are constantly losing as women right now. World events are causing us to yell at our screens and possibly re-watch episodes of The Handmaid’s Tale to prepare for the dystopic future that may unfold.
However, today is not one for grieving and raging. Today is a day for embracing our strengths as women and celebrating some of the most important relationships we have with other women. Today I want to think about the bond that exists between sisters (literal and metaphorical) and reminisce. Content warning: I may or may not get sentimental...
You remember the early days of sisterhood with fondness. If you are the older sister, you desperately wanted a sibling when you were a child. You imagined the adoration she’d have for you, the elder, and how amazing it would be to have your own little mini-you to dress up, to control and ultimately own like a real-life doll.
You then remember that when she did eventually come along, she brought with her the crushing reality of having a sibling. You no longer rule this kingdom.
Now you have to share a room and a bunk bed and pretty much everything you own (or think you own, let’s be honest you never bought any of it). You may have got dibs on the top bunk but she got all of your parents’ attention.
If you are the younger sister, you remember looking up to this glorious creature who would become your protector and guardian. She was your cooler parent who wouldn’t tell you off and the one who already knew the ins and outs of this curious world – until she doused your Carebear in oil and set it on fire because you wanted to hang with her and her loser friends.
As teenagers, you worked at the same place together and enjoyed the many times you would confuse customers who thought you were the same person. One summer, you may or may not have fallen in love with the same person but were genuinely happy if they chose the other because well, she’s your sister. In secret though you cried your eyes out whilst listening to your favourite faux-punk band of the time.
As children, you found ways to annoy each other. She woke you up super early on Saturdays crying, and you sometimes tied her to a chair and left her trapped alone in a room for hours.
As adults, you suddenly become friends with each other’s friends. You help each other’s social circle grow with the best people. She then tells you that she used to read all of your diaries when you were a teenager. Even the secret ‘sealed’ section. You don’t talk to her for a day.
As kids, not only did you have to share the same wardrobe, you would literally wear the same thing – often fluorescent so your parents could not lose you in a crowd. You probably even shared a similar bowl haircut at one point. You looked like Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum and you’d probably argue over who was ‘Dum’.
You remember the times where you actually did look after each other. You had someone to hold your hand when you crossed the road. Someone to act out scenes from your favourite Disney flick that year (the Pumbaa to your Timon). Most importantly, you had someone to help you mock your defenceless cousins when they came to visit.
Nowadays, you are best friends (or at the very least, friends who may or may not share DNA). She is your ally when your parents get all up in your grill. She is there with donuts when some asshole breaks your heart and she is a call away when you just need someone to have your back.
In fact that is what having a sister is about – someone who is there for you no matter what. Whether they’re a biological or metaphorical sister, we got to have each other’s backs. In a world where just being a woman can be frightening, we need to ally with each other even more. Call your sister(s) up today. Tell them you love them, tell them you’re there for them and remind them that we march at noon. Long live the sisterhood.Support Villainesse