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10 Sweet Moments Only Long Distance Sisters Can Relate To

10 Sweet Moments Only Long Distance Sisters Can Relate To

I have a long distance sister. My sister lives in another state and I miss her like crazy, but it does make getting together all the more poignant and enjoyable when it does happen. Sisterhood is undeniably a special bond, one that can’t be broken — regardless of how far apart you are or how often you get to see each other. Often life gets busy and whether they are across the street or across the other side of the world, getting together with your sister can get less frequent as we get older. However, there is an upside to living far away from each other. Having a long distance sister means that catching up is all the more significant.

Here are 10 sweet moments that long distance sisters can relate to:

1. Having a place to stay when you travel

When you live away from your sister, you know that any time you visit her specifically or happen to travel in her vicinity, you will definitely have a place to call home. Free lodging with family, especially a sister, means always having a home away from home. And if you forgot something or need a special pair of earrings to finish off an outfit, you can always raid your sister’s room, just like old times.

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2. Exchanging all the presents at once

Having missed several special occasions by the time you get together means you get to exchange all your gifts with each other at once. Birthdays, graduations, religious holidays – any occasion that requires a gift is saved up and a good way to save on postage is to put all those presents aside and take them with you next time you visit. Then, you can open a bottle of wine and a giant box of chocolates and sit on the lounge room floor to unwrap all your goodies.

3. Meeting and reconnecting with nieces/nephews

If residing apart has meant that you aren’t able to be there to hold each others’ hands while in labor, visits can mean meeting new nieces and nephews for the first time or seeing how much they’ve grown and changed the next time you reconnect. Photos and videos can keep you updated, but being an aunty in the flesh without having to babysit weekly makes the relationship with the little critters all the more worthwhile.

4. Exploring each others’ home improvements

Getting to stay at each others’ house infrequently means you don’t see the mess of renovation and home decoration. When the time comes to visit you have both got the spare bedroom immaculate, like a bed and breakfast. Showing each other your homes can be the fun part of not living near one another.

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5. Sharing a meal

As children, you probably sat at the dining table together a million times over a million meals. Breakfasts, lunches, dinners and you never even said two words to each other except maybe to fight over the last piece of garlic bread, but now meals take on a different meaning. Breaking bread with your sister at your favorite cafe or restaurant, or better still cooking a meal for her gives you both immeasurable pleasure and comfort. Open a bottle of good wine and break out the ice cream and coffee and you’re likely to be sitting at the dining table for half the night.

6. Hugging

As kids it was probably the most uncool thing in the world to do to hug your sister. You don’t realize how little affectionate physical contact you have with your siblings whey you are children; the only time you touch is likely to be the rare occasions when you fall asleep on the lounge together or if you shove each other as you pass in the hallway. However, as adults there is nothing as comforting as that bear hug the minute you see each other at the air port or in the driveway. The older you get, the tighter and longer the hugs.

7. Making eye contact in real time

When you mostly communicate with your long distance sister via text message, email, or online chatting, you don’t make actual eye contact with her. Even if you’re looking at her through a computer screen, you’re probably just looking at the image of yourself talking or you’re doing other things while you talk. Eye contact is underrated. It’s these moments that are a stark reminder of the connection between you.

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8. Waking up and going to bed in the same house again

How many mornings and evenings together did you take for granted as children? Living apart puts an end to bleary-eyed breakfasts in your pajamas and late nights watching movies together. They say, about many things, you never know when the last time will be. Catching up brings those morning and evening opportunities back. It’s just nice to be under the same roof again, knowing they are on the other side of the wall provides a sense of coziness lost long ago.

9. Reminiscing about old times

At some point it is inevitable that you will remember the past together. When you don’t see each other regularly, you lack having someone in your life with that shared experience of growing up together. You have known this person the longest in your life. Longer than your parents, partner, children, and your best friends. Having somebody to evoke the past with, who understands and remembers your memories, good and bad, helps you to make sense of who you are and where you come from. Nothing is as precious as going through old photo albums with the one person who was standing beside you.

10. Making plans for the future

The distance between you is an opportunity to look forward to something. It’s knowing that at some point you will see each other again and that will get you through being apart. Absence and distance definitely make the heart grow fonder. Petty disagreements and personality clashes, sibling rivalry and old resentments disappear because you cherish your relationship all the more.

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In this day and age, people go their own way. The world is small. It isn’t unusual for families to live continents apart, but with the ease of travel and technology those relationships not only survive, but thrive. Having a long distance sister is a privilege and it’s the quality of time spent together that’s most important, not the quantity. Being far away from each other forces you to make those moments count.

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Diane Koopman

Writer, Author, Novelist, Self-Publisher

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Last Updated on August 19, 2019

How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

We live in a world that constantly tells us what to do, how to act, what to be. Knowing how to be true to yourself and live the life you want can be a challenge.

When someone asks how we are, we assume that the person does not mean the question sincerely, for it would lead to an in depth conversation. So telling them that you are good or fine, even if you’re not, is the usual answer.

In an ideal world, we would stop and truly listen. We wouldn’t be afraid to be ourselves. Instead, when we answer about how we are doing, our mask, the persona we show the world, tightens. Sometimes even more so than it might have been before. Eventually, it becomes hard to take off, even when you’re alone.

Imagine a world where we asked how someone was doing and they really told us. Imagine a world where there were no masks, only transparency when we talked to one another.

If you want to live in a world that celebrates who you are, mistakes and all, take off the mask. It doesn’t mean you have to be positive or fine all the time.

According to a Danish psychologist, Svend Brinkman, we expect each other to be happy and fine every second, and we expect it of ourselves. And that “has a dark side.”[1] Positive psychology can have its perks but not at the expense at hiding how you truly feel in order to remain seemingly positive to others.

No one can feel positive all the time and yet, that is what our culture teaches us to embrace. We have to unlearn this. That said, telling others you are ‘“fine”’ all the time is actually detrimental to your wellbeing, because it stops you from being assertive, from being authentic or your truest self.

When you acknowledge a feeling, it leads you to the problem that’s causing that feeling; and once you identify the problem, you can find a solution to it. When you hide that feeling, you stuff it way down so no one can help you.You can’t even help yourself.

Feelings are there for one reason: to be felt. That doesn’t mean you have to act on that feeling. It just means that you start the process of problem solving so you can live the life you want.

1. Embrace Your Vulnerability

When you are your true self, you can better self-advocate or stand up for what you need. Your self-expression matters, and you should value your voice. It’s okay to need things, it’s okay to speak up, and it’s okay not to be okay.

Telling someone you are simply “fine” when you are not, does your story and your journey a great disservice. Being true to yourself entails embracing all aspects of your existence.

When you bring your whole self to the table, there is nothing that you can’t beat. Here’re 7 benefits of being vulnerable you should learn.

Can you take off the mask? This is the toughest thing anyone can do. We have learned to wait until we are safe before we start to be authentic.

In relationships especially, this can be hard. Some people avoid vulnerability at any cost. And in our relationship with ourselves, we can look in the mirror and immediately put on the mask.

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It all starts with your story. You have been on your own unique journey. That journey has led you here, to the person you are today. You have to be unafraid, and embrace all aspects of that journey.

You should seek to thrive, not just survive. That means you do not have to compete or compare yourself with anyone.

Authenticity means you are enough. It’s enough to be who you are to get what you want.

What if for the first time ever, you were real? What if you said what you wanted to say, did what you wanted to do, and didn’t apologize for it?

You were assertive, forthcoming in your opinions or actions to stand for what is right for you, (rather than being passive or aggressive) in doing so. You didn’t let things get to you. You knew you had something special to offer.

That’s where we all should be.

So, answer me this:

How are you, really?

And know that no matter the answer, you should still be accepted.

Bravery is in the understanding that you still may not be accepted for your truth.

Bravery is knowing you matter even when others say that you do not.

Bravery is believing in yourself when all evidence counters doing so (i.e. past failures or losses)

Bravery is in being vulnerable while knowing vulnerability is a sign of strength.

It’s taking control.

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2. Choose Your Attitude in Adversity

You can take control of your destiny and live the life you want by being true to yourself. You can start anytime. You can start today.

You can start with one day at a time, just facing what happens that day. Most of us get overwhelmed when faced with the prospect of a big change. Even if the only thing we change is our attitude.

In one instant, you can become a different person with a change of attitude. When you take control of your attitude, you become able to better understand what is around you. This allows you to move forward.

Originally, you may have had a life plan. It could have started when you were little; you were hoping to become a mermaid, doctor, astronaut or all three when you grew up. You were hoping to be someone. You were hoping to be remembered.

You can still dream those dreams, but eventually reality sets in. Obstacles and struggles arise. You set on a different path when the last one didn’t work out. You think of all the “shoulds” in your life in living the life you want. You should be doing this…should be doing that…

Clayton Barbeau, psychologist, coined the term “shoulding yourself.’[2] When we are set on one path and find ourselves doing something different. It becomes all the things you should be doing rather than seeing the opportunities right in front of you.

But in all this disarray, did you lose sight of the real you?

It may be in our perceived failures and blunders that we lose sight of who we are, because we try to maintain position and status.

In being who we really are and achieving what we really want, we need to be resilient: How to Build Resilience to Face What Life Throws at You

It means that we do not see all possibilities of what might happen, but must trust ourselves to begin again, and continue to build the life we want. In the face of adversity, you must choose your attitude.

Can attitude overcome adversity? It certainly helps. While seeking to be true to yourself and live the life you want, you will have to face a fact:

Change will happen.

Whether that change is good or bad is unique to each person and their perspective.

You might have to start over, once, twice, a few times. It doesn’t mean that everything will be okay, but that you will be okay. What remains or should remain is the true you. When you’ve lost sight of that, you’ve lost sight of everything.

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And then, you rebuild. Moment after moment, day after day. We all have a choice, and in this moment, that matters.

You can choose to have a positive attitude, seeing the silver lining in each situation and, where there is none, the potential for one. Maybe that silver lining is you and what you will do with the situation. How will you use it for something good?

That’s how you can tap into yourself and your power. Sometimes it happens by accident, sometimes on purpose. It can happen when we aren’t even looking for it, or it can be your only focus. Everyone gets there differently.

You can rise, or you can remain. Your choice.

When the worst happens, you can rely on your authenticity to pull you through. That’s because Self Advocacy, speaking up to let others know what you need, is part of finding the real you.

There is nothing wrong with asking for help. Or sometimes, helping others can help us deal with the pain of a hurtful situation. You decide how you’re going to help others, and suddenly, you become your best self.

3. Do What Makes You Happy When No One’s Looking

Being the best version of you has nothing to do with your success or your status. It has everything to do with your Character, what you do when no one’s looking.

In order to create the life you want, you have to be the person you want to be. Faking it till you make it is just a way to white knuckle it through your journey. You have the fire inside of you to make things right, to put the pieces together, to live authentically. And Character is how you get there.

If you fall down and you help another up while you’re down there, it’s like you rise twice.

Along with attitude, your character is about the choices you make rather than what happens to you.

Yes, it’s about doing the right thing even when obstacles seem insurmountable.  It’s about using that mountain you’ve been given to show others it can be moved.  It’s about being unapologetically you, taking control, choosing your attitude in adversity and being the best version of you to create the life you want.

How do you know what you really want? Is it truly status or success?

Unfortunately, these things do not always bring happiness. And aspects of our image or “performance driven existence” may not achieve satisfaction. Materialism is part of our refusal to accept ourselves as enough. All the things we use to repress our true selves are about being enough.

“Enoughness” is what we truly seek, but ego gets in the way.

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Ego is the perception of self as outer worth. It’s not REAL self worth.

Ego represses our true self with a new self— the self of chasing ‘“Am I ever enough?”’ questions. And instead of filling our true selves with self-love and acceptance, when we “should ourselves” and chase “enoughness,” we feed the ego or our image.

It’s important to realize YOU ARE ENOUGH, without all the material trappings.

Stanford psychologist Meagan O’Reilly describes the damage of not thinking we are enough. One of her tactics for combating this is to complete the sentence,[3]

“If I believed I were already enough, I’d ____”

What would you do if you felt you were enough?

By believing you are enough, you can live the life you want.

So many fake it to try to get there, and they end up losing themselves when they lose more and more touch with their Authenticity.

Final Thoughts

By being yourself, you are being brave. By acknowledging all you can be, you tell the universe that you can until you believe it too. The steps are easy, and you are worth it. All of it is about the purpose you are leading and the passion that is your fuel.

Being true to yourself is all about mastering how to live life authentically rather than faking or forcing it. Having the life you want (and deserve) is about being trusting in yourself and the purpose you are living for. Both need passion behind it, fueling it each second, or you will experience burn out.

When you are authentic, you can call the road you walk your own. When you live your life for you and not just the results of all your actions (faking it till you make it), you can let go of what you don’t need. This clarifies and pushes purpose to you, living for something that is greater than you.

You will find that making decisions based on what will actually achieve your goals, will help you attain the life you want, and your success with each step, will allow you to enjoy the process. Good luck!

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Featured photo credit: Ariana Prestes via unsplash.com

Reference

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