Whether we like our family members or not, we can’t change the fact we are part of the same blood line. We never had the privilege to choose our family members. We are born, raised and stuck with it. God planted us where He intends us to bloom.

I have a sister – just one. For 7 years of being the only child, a spoiled little princess some would say, I had a taste of heaven when my one and only sister came into my life. A sister was all I ever wanted. Not clothes, not toys, not dolls, not money, just one sister. The birth of my younger sister made her the joy, the light and rainbow of our home.

On the other hand, I am far from perfection and Reine is not perfect herself either, which results to an imperfect relationship as siblings. We don’t fight like cats and dogs. We’re actually pretty normal with opposite personalities. Although conflicts get in the way at times that make us argue about certain things. As the older sister, I see myself as the one responsible in our sisterhood. God granted me my prayer request – a sister – not for any other reason but to take care of her. Slowly yet surely, God has been guiding me to walk towards the path of being the best sister for her. Despite the struggles, I’ve come up with practical ways I want to share in becoming the best sister for Reine.

How to be the Best Sister:

1. Talk to her with her language.
The 7 years age gap means our generation is quite a distance from each other. Well, not that far like our parents but this fast-paced internet world we live in advances the younger ones in learning more than we could ever imagine. Reine is still in high school while I’m already finished with my collegiate life. It is important for me to stay updated with the trends of the teens, who her friends are, what flicks attract her, or even the kind of boys surrounding her, in order to guide and relate to her. My job is to show her she could talk to me anything under the sun, the rain, the storm or whatever the weather is. Often times, teenagers choose to talk to their friends rather than their family members feeling only their friends could understand them. In this way, we maintain a comfortable level in communicating no matter what the topic is.

2. Spend time or even your money for her.
As the older sister, I have more money than her. Haha! One of the love languages, the language of gifts, makes my sister feel the love through my random surprises and gifts for her. I show my love for her by taking her out or even getting something she really wants. Don’t look at it as being a spoiler or a briber. It doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. You have to explain to her that it’s your gesture of showing appreciation and love for her, without any occasion at all. Oh by the way, enjoying a cone of ice cream with my sister would work.

3. Be humble and ask her how you can improve as a sister.

In our culture, if we’re the older sibling, we have more say and we have more voice in the home. This leads to being more proud. One tip I could give you is to practice humility towards your sibling, whether they’re older or younger. From time to time, my sister and I casually talk about life and our dreams for ourselves. On that same plane, we also discuss matters of our heart. I ask her one of the most important questions, “how I can improve as her ‘ate’ or older sister.” It takes great humility in order to say this strong line. Don’t expect to hear flowery words. The reality is, you will hear things you don’t even want to think of. Praise God, my sister and I have become more open than the past few years. We help each other improve ourselves and our relationship as sisters. Besides, I’m the only one she has. And she’s the only one I have. Hehe. 🙂

4. Be a helpful sibling.
Try to understand the areas where she needs help and be the first one to volunteer to help her. I’m kind of weak at this certain point. So I still make an effort to check where I could help her. For instance, she joined a contest on facebook in order for her to win tickets to upcoming theater shows. I know I wanted to help her but I didn’t place my full effort until the last minute, the last day of the contest specifically. During the last day of the contest, I messaged everyone online and told them to LIKE my sister’s facebook post for her to win the tickets. I felt like a spammer messaging everyone the same thing over and over. With all our efforts, she successfully won the tickets. I felt like a winner with her. We were both screaming and celebrating with each other after the official announcement of the winner. Whew! 🙂

There are so many ways to be helpful. You just have to figure where your sibling needs your help and your support.

5. Treat her as your best friend. 

Whether it’s a victorious moment or a frustrating moment, share and conquer it with her. Like a best friend, you are by her side for a shoulder to lean on or to cry on. We may encounter potential best friends along the way but a sister’s presence is incomparable. She’s a precious gift sent by the heaven above to be treasured while she’s here with you on earth.

I still have a marathon to run in reaching perfection. I even doubt I will. Yet the presence of God in our lives is the only way I could endure in this long marathon of being the best for my sister.
In the cookies of life, sisters are the chocolate chips. ~Author Unknown
Do you have other tips to be the best sister?
Share with me your thoughts! 🙂
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Pray, Eat and Love.
The Food Scout