Farewell to Gemini
I was a touch melancholy today, and it took Rapunzel about 30 seconds (over the phone, while driving, even — she is good) to figure out why for me:
My sister Gemini headed back to China yesterday. And I miss her.
She has been teaching in Shanghai for the past school year, and is under contract for another year with an inclination toward staying longer than that.
It’s hard having her live so far away, in a time zone not conducive to skyping. Once I dismantled the emotional barricade of missing her, however, I was left with a swell of gratitude.
I am so lucky to have her for a sister. Despite being very different from me externally, in both personality and lifestyle (she is lively, extroverted, an incorrigible shopper, usually surrounded by heaps of friends, has neither spouse nor kids, etc. etc.), when we make the time to talk, we land on the same page with very little effort. She is a deep and unconventional thinker who asks the right sort of questions, and although she can chatter up a storm when she wants to, she listens well, too. The stories of our childhood, and the mother we lost, are alive in one another, and just being together recharges them, even when they are not actively being recalled.
It is a nice memory I have now, from the other night: me perched on the bed, her nestled into the chair, our eyes sparkling with laughter in the lamplight. Swapping stories from the past year, unraveling who we each have become, and are becoming.
Mom would be proud. I know I am.