For all stages of my life thus far, I’ve had an older sister figure to help guide me along. And as a disclaimer right off the bat, this isn’t a story of how I suddenly gained romantic feelings for them. These friendships were 100% platonic, with 0% physical interaction, and all conversational. Conversations varied from school tips, to joking, to advice, and secrets, of course.
Upon first reflecting on this concept, I thought of my older cousin, Grace:
More commonly known as jiejie (Mandarin for older sister) amongst the rest of the cousins and me. She was the original older sister. She was always, and still is, so nice to me. Due to the age gap, she’s always been a life stage ahead of me, so I’m sure I heard a lot of random advice from her about middle and high school. I probably didn’t appreciate it back then being the wild one I was. Most importantly, she inadvertently taught me how to properly interact with other girls. By that, I mean she would reprimand me for the wrong things I did.. Besides all of our parents, she was the oldest female presence around after all (and only one of two girls cousins for the longest time). To put it simply, I at least learned how to behave better by the start of high school. While she was in college, things transitioned to…
Janice. Whom I called Juanice (because Princeton told me to).
I met her randomly through Princeton while I was hanging out at the library. I didn’t have a 6th period, so that’s why I was there. She didn’t have a 6th period either, so for that semester we got acquainted, even without Princeton around. It was weird, for some reason we just kind of clicked. Again, zero romantic feelings for her, but it was just cool to see our friendship blossom over time. I even began to play along with her saying “mrawr” and “marp”. She was the type of person to hug people goodbye; not that it’s a bad thing, I was just taken aback by it the first time around. Perhaps the thing we talked about most was the topic of romance and dating. Even though she is just a year older than me, she had a ton of stories to tell. We talked a bit throughout college as well, until things got busy for the both of us.
During high school, there was also Christine.
Wow, easily the nicest person I’ve ever met. We first met through the Christian club, ACTS. For whatever reason, she decided to invest a lot time and energy into me. It was mainly to teach me ACTS and worship related things. It was a pretty crucial learning point as I was still budding my faith and out of my shyness. Before I got my driver’s license she would always kindly drive me to ACTS events and meetings. We kept/keep in touch every now and then.
During college, as I got more plugged into EPIC, I met Venus. Whom I jokingly called Mars.
She was pretty easy to figure out.. she likes to sleep, she likes to drink sweet tea and she likes to share secrets. Similarly to Janice, we enjoyed talking about topic of relationships and dating. Additionally, she liked to tell me about her guy problems and I would share about my girl problems. It was a pretty simple flow of things. She often had me do random tasks and chores for her since her boyfriend graduated and he wasn’t around as much anymore. Gladly, yet foolishly, I would oblige because acts of services is my love language. Maybe she just liked to gossip, but I did enjoy those conversations. After she graduated and moved back to Nor Cal, we kind of lost touch.
There was also Kelly (Welly), another sister I met in EPIC.
Before I had a car in school, she would drive me around places. It was mainly for rides to Evergreen SGV and WCCC on Sundays. We got acquainted when we (and a few other friends) decided to take an online insect class together. Through that, we began to interact outside of a studying setting. Our conversations were surprisingly thought-provoking; we seemed to like to pick each other’s brain a lot. The adventurous type, she often tried to include me and everyone in things. After I graduated college and she finished her credentials, we kind of lost touch as she moved back up north along with Venus.
To reiterate, these girls, these “older sisters”, were there to help me along at key points in my life and I’m thankful for that. It may not seem like much, but as I reflect and look back on life, I value those interactions more and more. The majority of my friends actually have older sisters, and I always wondered what it would be like. True, I have a older sister-in-law now. She’s definitely an interesting one.