Today I met with my mom and my sister for my sister to have her fitting for her wedding dress. My sister. Her wedding dress. Today. In real life! It was a bit of a surreal experience and not because I am not tremendously excited and happy for her and her fiance, but because a part of me still thinks of my sister as the little high schooler that would come stay with Mattie and I in one of our apartments in College Station. We loved to have her up to visit us and it was so easy to please her...a bag of hot cheetos, green teas or other favorite drinks, the promise of a meal out, and maybe a movie or two to watch together. Now that I think about it, she would probably still feel very pleased by these things. She was in high school when we got married and I remember seeing her in her makeup and with her hair fixed as I got ready for my big day and a little twinge of pride went through me that such a pretty girl would stand next to me while I got married. We have a picture somewhere of our wedding day where Jessica is looking at one of our other bridesmaids with a big smile and a scrunched up nose like they were laughing at some inside joke. I have never known what was so funny, but it makes me smile all the same.
Maybe I think of her even further back than that though, the little middle schooler who I would take to and pick up from school, driving her crazy while practicing lines for the school play, or getting mad at her because she was running behind and I wanted to hurry up and drop her off so I could go visit with my friends at school. Like the time she was covered in green paint from her own school play and I was so ticked at her getting into my car like that because everything she touched turned green. I was scratching green paint off the steering wheel for ages. I rather enjoyed going to see her in that school play later that evening though. Of course, we never knew what state we would find Jessica in when we picked her up from school though. She is still upset about the time her principal accused her of throwing pudding at a classmate in the cafeteria, she insisted that it wasn't pudding, but tapioca!
Maybe there are even still memories of her as the little elementary baby, constantly getting injured, fabricating imaginative tales to tell everyone she saw, balancing a fine line of work and what could she get away with in regards to entertaining teachers to distraction. Matt and I took the girls to play at an elementary park yesterday and it made me remember the one year JJ and I shared a school, one day it was cold and I had an extra jacket in my cubby in my 5th grade class so I asked if I could take it to my sister as she had forgotten hers. There are memories of home too, playing in the backyard, setting up the Barbie house to perfection, sneaking out of bed to see if Santa had visited, being locked in the laundry room by her, having mud and dead animals thrown at me, and several nights of knocking on the wall between our rooms while whispering back and forth what we wanted to dream about...brownies, cookies, ice cream...
It's definitely hard not to be nostalgic when it is time for your sister to commit her life to someone else. As I said, I am so happy for them and their love, but it's so nice that...for 5 more weeks and 6 more days she will still be Jessica Johnson!