A Revelation Moment

Friday, July 05, 2013

"My notes always shine, boy! A pity the rest of the world doesn't see it." -Eoin Colfer, Airman

Have you ever had a sudden revelation? Has an idea or thought ever struck you so hard you thought you might fall over? Have you ever- in a single moment- figured out the answer to a problem you've been struggling with all your life, and never knew about until just then?

Well, I have now...

For any of you who know me personally (or even mostly through this blog), you will know that I have a sister. She is sixteen years old (turning seventeen in August, though let's not talk about that), and she is one of my closest friends. Some people might find it strange that a teenage girl actually thinks her older sister is her best friend, but it's true for me, and I'm so thankful. She is an amazing sister.

Anyways, she and I, apparently, look alike. Quite a bit alike, in fact. (Several times, people have asked if we were twins, though I honestly think that's taking it a bit far. I mean, really? Twins??? Tell me we don't look that much alike!!!) Aside from the fact that we both have brown hair and blue eyes, I don't see that much resemblance between us. People have assured me that we definitely look like siblings,which I suppose would make sense. (Us being siblings and all.)

So, there's this misconception that some people have of us. They seem to think that, since we look so much alike, we must be clones of each other. 

And you know what? I think it's really annoying.

Always have, always will.

I mean, just because we may look alike, does not mean our interests or hobbies are the same. It also does not mean that we both react the same way to jokes, or that we appreciate the same things.

In fact, while we may be similar in some ways, for the most part we are completely different. She is an amazing artist, while I don't think I could draw like she can to save my life. I love to write poetry, and the one poem she wrote... well... she didn't like it very much. She is very good at leading and directing, and I much prefer to follow. She can figure out what needs to be done, while I need someone to tell me exactly what I should do. She's rather outgoing, and I'm much more introverted.

All of that being said, she and I were talking the other day. We said a lot of stuff (most of which I would never repeat on here), and had a great time. One of the many things we talked about was theater...

I've been doing this for nearly three years now. The whole time has been with one particular theater group, and I've gotten pretty close to some of the people there. Things have, over the years, changed quite a bit. (Things often do that.) People have left, new people have come, etc. Something big that has changed is the type of scripts we've been doing. I'm... not a fan of them. In fact, I got rather frustrated with the latest script. 

I guess I did a little complaining, too.

Because of this (and other reasons), my mom suggested that we take the summer off. At first I was thinking, "Well, that's probably a good idea! Maybe we'll go back to doing scripts that I like."

But, the more I got to thinking about it, the more I realized... I don't really want to quit. In fact, I don't want to quit at all. I hadn't realized how much I love doing theater (with those particular people) until I was thinking about a whole summer without it.

Of course, I told my sister what I'd been thinking about- how little I was looking forward to quitting- and she said something that surprised me. (Well, it surprised me at the time. Looking back I realize that it shouldn't have.) She said that she actually was ready for a break! 

My sister, who has thrived on theater for the past three years, who has (in the past) gotten incredibly antsy when we missed theater two weeks in a row, who practically lived for theater, was ready for a break?!?!

How could this be?!?!

Well, like I said, I really should have seen it coming. Her last summer with theater was incredibly exhausting, and some other stuff since then has also just been a bit stressful for her. 

After a moment or two of contemplation I said, sort of absentmindedly, "That's OK. You can quit. I don't need you there."

 And that's when it hit me. It hit me so hard, my head literally jerked back like I'd been slapped in the face. My eyes got big. (I probably gasped, too, just like in the movies.) I was right. 

I didn't need her.

That might sound really harsh and rude, and you might be a bit confused that I would call something like that a "sudden revelation" instead of "Ana being rude". However, you probably don't realize just how important that discovery was for me. (Or how monumental.)

My whole life (or at least, for almost as long as I can remember), I've always been really nervous about doing things on my own. Whether it was going to  "Jungle Jam" (aka Children's church) at my grandma's church, or going to get the cart while we were in Wal-Mart, I always wanted my sister to come with me, and it disturbed me when she either couldn't or refused to come along. (I don't entirely know why, either. I guess it was because I like to follow people, and she usually was the leader. So, when I didn't have her to follow, it messed up the perfect balance of my world.) Even to this day, going to a party or a friend's house without her gives me butterflies, and I will go to certain lengths to prevent it.

So, for me to say that I didn't need her (and to actually believe it) was a huge thing for me. So huge, in fact, that I started laughing and crying. Not crying because I was laughing so hard- actually laughing and crying at once, but separately. (I thought that was something that only happened in books or movies, but apparently it's not.)

My sister, of course, was incredibly relieved. "Finally!" she said. "I've been waiting for that for ten years!!!"

Later, as I was writing about it in my journal, I got to thinking about it again. Why was that so important for me? Why did I feel like an incredible weight that I didn't realize I was carrying had suddenly been lifted from my shoulders?

And as I sat there, thinking back over my life, I realized something. Somehow, in the early years of my life, I had convinced myself that I needed my sister in order to function. And because of that, I told myself that if I didn't have her there with me, people wouldn't notice me, love me, or something. I had convinced myself, without even realizing it, that I somehow wasn't good enough, and that my sister made me so.

For all of my talk about being special, unique, and what-not, I was struggling with that very thing more than I ever knew.

I know I've said this before, but I'm saying it again- God knew what He was doing when He made you... well, you. You are special because God loves you, and He made you. You don't need to hang around someone else to be special. You are special to and for God. You shine! And if the rest of the world doesn't see that.. well, it's their loss!

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  1. Testing, testing... I've had at least two people express difficulty posting. Let's see if it's fixed!