(NOTE: This blog post was written on September 4, 2013 right after Marley was born. Only a few changes, mostly punctuation and rephrasing, have been made. Other than that, it's all the same.)
Sometimes I hated being the big sister. I hated feeling like I had all of this responsibility to protect my sister from things I couldn't really protect her from. I hated trying to be the perfect role model, but mostly, I hated failing at being a good role model. During high school, I headed down a negative and destructive path, and when my sister did the same, I blamed myself. I still do. But despite all of this, I loved being her big sister, and I think (despite everything) I was a pretty good role model for her.
But what I've loved the most is having her as my best friend and being able to watch her grown into a beautiful and loving person, wife and now a mother. It's been one of the most rewarding and amazing experiences watching her grow into the person she is today. When I watched her get married, I cried. And today when I watched her during labor, I almost cried (I held it in for you, baby sis!). I couldn't have been more proud. Sure she cried (most women would), but she rarely complained. She never yelled at anyone. And despite the tremendous amount of pain she was in, she was calm. Most importantly, she was strong.
And when I watched her hold her beautiful baby girl, I just knew she was going to be an incredible mother. The things she has already done for her daughter shows just how selfless she is. For the past nine months she's put her baby first...and labor was no different. All she ever wanted was to have a healthy baby, and after 15 hours of labor that ended in a c-section, she got just that - a beautiful, healthy baby girl. Alyssa, I'm so proud to call you my sister. You are truly one of the strongest people I've ever known. You've been to hell and back, but you've come out on top. In January I watched you marry the man of your dreams, and now I'm watching you hold your newest love- your daughter.
Congratulations, Alyssa on your baby girl. I have no doubt you're going to be an amazing mother. And I'm so excited to have a niece to spoil.