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Teen Fiction: Moving On

Malky Cope

If I had known what was in store for our relationship, I might not have counted down the days to her wedding with such eagerness

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

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T

he day my oldest sister, Sara, got engaged was one of the happiest days of my life. Although there is a seven-year gap between us, the age difference had never bothered us. I couldn’t understand my friends when they griped about annoying older sisters. As the only two girls among a houseful of boys, we were more than just sisters — we were best friends. Sara was my confidante, my role model, the person I aspired to be like when I reached her age. Now that Sara was engaged, I was thrilled. At long last, a kallah in the family. If I had known what was in store for our relationship, I might not have counted down the days to her wedding with such eagerness. But at the time I was unaware. As they say, ignorance is bliss.

The weeks flew by in a blur of planning, appointments, and shopping. My sister relied on my fashion sense and requested that I accompany her on her shopping sprees and to her many different appointments — something I was only too happy to do. We had a blast shopping together. Spending so much time with each other only drew us closer. I’m not sure when, but at some point, it suddenly hit me that the closer we got to the wedding, the sooner Sara would be leaving the house. The thought filled me with dread.

“Don’t worry, favorite sis,” Sara consoled me, hugging me tight late one night as I confided my worry over our upcoming separation. “I may be moving on in life but I’m only getting married, not running away. Don’t think for a moment that I’m going to forget about you even when I’m far away in Israel. We’ll talk to each other often.” Famous last words. If only I would have recorded them so I could have played them back to her later.

The day of the wedding finally dawned, a culmination of the hectic days that had preceded it. The wedding was as much fun as I had imagined it would be. Well, almost. I know I’m going to sound petty, but I was pretty disappointed that I only got to dance with Sara twice. As her only sister, I thought she would pull me in more.

 

Still, I tried not to take it personally. There were so many family members and friends, and everyone had to get a turn. Although I happened to notice (yes, I was keeping count of who got to dance with the kallah and how many times) that she danced with her new sisters-in-law more than her very own sister. Still, I pushed my own feelings aside and danced up a storm from the outer circles, doing all the requisite shtick.

“Good night,” I wished my sister at the end of the wedding. “I’ll miss you,” I said, my voice showing the emotion I felt. But Sara, busy laughing at something Chaim had said, didn’t reply. I wondered if she had even heard me. She seemed oblivious to everyone except for her new husband. I watched their receding backs as they headed to the car that would take them away, and I felt a sudden sense of deflation.

Finally, back home, I didn’t feel ready to go to sleep, even though the hour was already late. If it would have been any other night I would have gone to Sara’s room, plopped myself down on the end of her bed and we would have rehashed the night’s event until sleep overcame us. But tonight, that wasn’t an option. Her absence left a big gaping hole in my heart. I missed Sara immensely, and there was pain in knowing my feelings were probably one sided. (Excerpted from Mishpacha Jr., Issue 712)

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