Monday, January 30, 2012

Raising Sisters

Four Sisters
This is me with my sisters.

Once upon a time I was the only one with blond hair while all of their hair colors ranged from outrageously red to Vitamin C orange to jet black. Now you see three varying shades of blond versus my deep brown hair.  My sisters and I are all very different people, despite what our faces may tell you, and we always seem to be just out of sync with one another. As in the three of them versus me. I always seem to be doing the exact opposite of the three of them.

And that works for me. I love all of my sisters, but I have no problem admitting that the three of them take turns doing some dumb-ass things. They alternate in waves of stupidity, and I believe they try to top each other. From eloping to drinking to driving drunk to getting busted for weed in the car when the cop wasn't even suspicious until she gave him reason to be, my sisters have very little in the way of common sense. They are constantly calling mom or dad or Memaw and Papaw to get money, to get help.

My father and I speak at least once a month, and he's always relieved when it's me on the other end.

"I never have to worry when it's you calling, Nelly. You're the only one who never needs help."

Because I like it that way. Independent. On my own two feet. My own grown up world with my boyfriend and my furry child and our home that we built together with what we have together. And my sisters say I am stuck up because I don't go visit redneck relations (I try to avoid claiming kinship with them altogether, honestly), because I don't have time to go see the family every Sunday anymore, because I refuse to buy any type of shoe or clothing item from Wal-Mart (Target has much better clothes), because of all of these reasons...

I call often. I check in. I talk and catch up and tease and do all of the things you're supposed to do with a family. But I live outside of my family. My world doesn't revolve around them. We were all raised the same way by the same people, and yet we have such different values.

I love my sisters, but I couldn't live like they do. I realize that as a musician I am supposed to appreciate the life of the free spirit, and it's not that I judge. They are free to live their lives as they see fit, and so long as they don't try to interfere with mine in a negative way, I don't judge. But when I get calls at three in the morning to come bail your dumb ass out of jail because you got caught with weed in your car, that's a problem. And if I'm the one shelling out three hundred dollars to get your dumb ass out of jail, then I get to lecture, nag, and generally lay into as much as I see fit.

Don't like it?

Don't call me.

My sisters are not bad people. They are young. And I may be the second oldest, but a lot of times I feel like I'm the oldest and I'm taking care of three little sisters. Why on earth should I ever want children when I've got three from my own family that I'm taking care of?

I get it. You're supposed to be there for family. And I don't mind being there.

I'm just saying that if somebody expects me to come and bail them out of jail with my hard earned money that I will never get paid back because, let's face it, they never pay me back when they borrow just twenty dollars,  then I have the absolute right to tell them that they are irresponsible, childish, absolutely deserving of their fate, and they better not call me as a character witness because I won't hold anything back about how absolutely stupid she is.

Is it so wrong that I feel like my sisters need someone to lay down the law?


  1. So, which one is in need of your wallet? I suspect it's the one to your immediate left, but it might be the one of the far left. Sometimes, a girl in glasses cannot be trusted.

  2. The one on the far left recently gave up her habit since she's playing mommy.

  3. You all look so thrilled ;D

    What does the one with glasses have on the side of her face...or is that a smudge on the picture...or, God forbid, a face tattoo?

  4. If you're paying $300 (!!) to bail someone out of jail, you lecture them as much as you want. Heck, you have a right to tie them to a chair and keep lecturing them for as long as you want. You're a better sister than I'd be.

  5. I think I'll pass on judging since I was the idiot brother who was always in need of rescue.

    I mostly grew out of it by the time I turned 21 and joined the army so I guess it wasn't too bad. Sure all of my family heaved a collective sigh of relief.

    Now I'm almost 50 and still making mistakes but dealing with them myself. And I've found a whole new set of mistakes to make. At least I'm not still making the same old ones.

  6. Sister's are tricky. I'm #3 of 4 and I know we all have moments where we feel like we're raising each other. We grow up into different people and often times those people don't understand the choices of the other. But we're sisters, so we're there for each other. And usually we're there with a strong opinion about the other's actions or situation. However, we have to admit to the fact that as sisters we'd rather be there with the opinion than not have anyone there at all.

  7. Bryan, yeah well...nobody was really read for the picture except Relly. She likes to face paint. She painted a Christmas tree on there.

    Nicki, I said they were lucky I was so tired or they'd be getting it a lot worse. Three hundred dollars is a trip to the vet for Choo Choo!

    Rev, you're proving what the problem is! They do the same stupid things over and over and over again. If they'd stop doing the same stupid things I could be a little more forgiving.

    Jenna, I guess I'd feel that way if I ever found myself in a situation like that. But if I DID Have a massive mess up I'd probably call Padawan instead of my sisters because I can't stand to hear, "Oh, how the tables have turned..."

  8. You know, I really liked this. I am the oldest and although I feel that it's my responsibility to bail my siblings (16 and 14) out if needed and be there and all of what comes with being in a family, I am so never-ending thankful that I live in a different state. Like you said , "But I live outside of my family." I do the same. Fortunately, my mom understand why and as much as she misses me, she's glad that I don't have to deal with the crazy.

  9. At least I can pride myself in the fact that I keep finding all new mistakes to make.

    I keep screwing up, but at least I'm inventive. (grin)

  10. Michael, it's nice that your family (or your mother at least) supports your need to establish a life of your own. Not that family isn't great...but space is always a good thing.

    Rev, I think you're supposed to do that. Ms. Frizzle always said to take chances, make mistakes, and get messy! But I think she meant reasonable mistakes.

  11. I have this extensive mental checklist. Every now and then I go "Ouch!! Oh snap!! Let's not do that again, okay?" then tick it off the list and maybe underline it a few times for good measure.

  12. I think it's cool that they at least consider you important enough to bail them out when they need it. Some families don't even have that much. But you do have the right to lecture. All you want.

  13. Good lawd, this is remarkably similar to my family situation. I'm actually the "baby" of three, and, like you, I'm an alleged snob because I try to succeed in life. I've also told the siblings one too many times the way I really feel, in brutally honest terms, so I'm pretty sure they'd hesitate to call me in one of those situations because I'm now "that bitch who doesn't care about them." Meh.

    Just hang in there, and don't hesitate to tell it like it is. Love your blog. This was a great post.

  14. You should explain to them that if you didn't care you wouldn't say anything. Sharing is caring, or something like that. Thank you, and I hope you take your own advice. Hang in there. One day they'll wake up, look back, and realize you were right. Then you can think "I told you so" when they say thank you.

    1. You certainly purchase the right to lecture when you put up the bail money. I have a brother who is almost 3 years older than me and I have ponied up the money to bail him out a couple of times. The last time must have been enough lecturing because he no longer calls me. He still gets in trouble, he just calls my mother or sister. I only received repayment one time and it came from my mother not him.

  15. I imagine you're like me: you've gotten used to not being paid back. It happens sometimes. He might also not call you because he's kept a mental track of what he owes you and it reached an alarming sum. He may very well intend to pay you back one day. Maybe.

  16. You go ahead and lecture their faces off! I support you 100%! It's just a good thing you're so nice as to bail them out in the first place. I might have made her spend the night before going to get her... Maybe.

    1. Next time she can stay the night. And then she can still have the lecture.


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