A sister obsession
I knew from the moment I spotted them that they were sisters. Something about the way they interacted as they meandered around the old-fashioned country store. My “sister-radar” triggered into overdrive. I studied the combination of features and the expressions that accompanied the varying shades of short to medium length blonde hair. There was a definite resemblance between the four. I guessed their ages spanned ten years or less. I had the feeling they hung out together often.
I could try to blame my past job responsibilities, that required I chat with strangers, for what happened next. But in all honesty, it would have taken a Herculean effort to not fire up a conversation when I found myself behind two of the women in the check-out line. They confirmed their sister status in a warm, friendly conversation. And I shared that in a week I would be meeting my sister who I’d just discovered. They expressed genuine excitement for me and my newly-discovered family. “Good luck,” they said, then we went our separate ways.
I used to bore my friends by dragging out the piles of tiny, frilly baby clothes put aside for the baby sister I would be getting soon. No actual “due date”, of course, because this baby sister we were “getting” would join our family via adoption. My poor, uninterested friends nodded politely then insisted we move along to something more exciting or at least less boring.
But the baby sister never came. Instead brother #3 joined the family when I was 7. And mom and dad said four kids were enough, so that was that. No sister. And the baby clothes found a new home.
I always wondered if a biological sister might be out there somewhere. A full sibling? A half-sibling? Older, younger? Could she live close by? Within driving distance? I assumed those questions would remain unanswered forever. Even if by chance I DID have a sister, what was the chance we’d find each other? Honestly, it was never more than a wispy, “what if” kind of dream I didn’t allow to linger. Because other than occasionally glancing through a random adoption registry and one brief call about non-identifying information that produced zero info, I had no strategy in place to search for my biological family.
But all of that changed with the disclosure of a doorstep which led to analyzed saliva that resulted in DNA matches followed by a crash course in genealogy genetics. And all of the sudden I have a sister.
Back to the reunion in Hawaii . . .