A Letter to My Sister

A sister is both your mirror - and your opposite. Ever since consciousness has dawned upon me, I've found this woman counterpart of myself, always present at a circumferential parameter around me. Since early ages, I have forever found a compatriat and an arch-rival in her, tussling for proving myself a paragon, and yet incomplete without her.

From early ages, I identified my best friend as Harneet, my elder sister. Harneet, being 3 years elder was always my first guardian, disciplinarian and my lightning angel. I spent my infancy, looking at her watching over me, in my cradle and then our adolescence clowning together in the fields.

In summer evenings, we used to go on a spree, riding our rickety toy scooter. She used to seat me at the back and used to straddle me around the meadows, while my grandparents used to do chores in the ranch.

At times, we spent hours cutting capers in the patio, frolicking and giggling, when mother stood in the kitchen corridor, with 2 glasses full of milk, calling our names. It was an evening protocol. As soon as mother called out, we used to halt our affairs, and race towards her. We carried on with our ballgames afterward.

I was around 2 years old, when I had a hideous pimple on my forehead. It was unsightly, filled with pus and it kept growing. The medicines were not doing any good. One of those days, Father was sitting in the porch, with me and Harneet fiddling around. My father held me and my sister on his lap and got a piece of bread. He pierced the boil on my forehead, to burst.

I was tearful, acting instantly to the severe pain, while she remained squatted there, somehow finding the sight amusing and laughing at what my father did to me. The sight of her rejoicing my situation, made me sob even louder. She's wicked.

We always shared a natural kinfolk relationship, where a normal conversation started with an argument, turned gradually into a sparring match, slapping and bashing each other with whatever we could get our hands on, and ended with our mother getting involved and whipping both of us.

My sister has always been the perfect coach, and I'm proud of her. She always stays cautious and protective, but also never acted pushy and pretended she knows everything and made me feel like I don't know what I'm doing. I have always witnessed her trying to be a cool older sister and not mother. Though, with a case like me I realize it's never easy, and I've always respected her for that, though in my own ways.

We are not often found showering each other with love, through gestures like hugging or kissing.

In Fact, we were never seen together in public. We studied in same school and hardly anyone, knew us to be sisters as we never used to speak to each other or about each other in school. We always led our distinct lives. I had my separate group of friends and interests, but the understanding that we both have developed while growing up, has always kept us connected. We have always got each other's back through thick and thin.

We used to share the same bed till the time Father built our own house and we were entitled separate bedrooms even though, for a considerable period, I used to sleep in her bed, till one day, I decided to sleep in my own.

After all these years, even till date when I visit home, she finds her safe haven in my room, she comes over at night and sleeps on my bed, just to avoid anyone waking her up early in the morning.

She has been, probably the most competitive relationship within the family, but as I grew up, one of my strongest allies has been my sister. Back in those days, a singing competition was organised in the school. I volunteered for it and submitted my song preference.

As the final date came by the corner, my house teacher expressed that she didn't like the choice of my song and would require me to change it, if I'd like to compete. I told her that I had been rehearsing it for days, but in vain. I was in a turmoil.

Harneet had noticed me practicing at home, and working hard, trying to get song right.

On the day of competition, when she came to know what my teacher said, she was outraged. She walked over to me, in the backstage. She said to me that no matter what the teacher says, I will still show up on the stage and sing the song, just because I worked so hard on it.

I was perturbed, but at the last moment, she and her friends motivated me. I walked up the stage and performed the song. My teacher was resentful, and cancelled my participation, though everyone else loved it.

Though I didn't win the competition, but I found the dearest champion in my hardest critic.

My sister is a big part of my actual style. Our style is not similar whatsoever, but she helped me find myself and find what I really liked. Amongst us, she was made out to be the goody-goody one.

She is more of a socialite than I am. While I was always tired of going to family gatherings, to sit in the corner and watch everybody else pretend I don't exist, she on the flipside, made up for my lackluster in my socialist abilities.

Harneet has been there for me through everything. I'm a middle child, and we have a younger sister, Taran who is stunning - just beautiful and smart. Taran finds her idol in Harneet too, while she is always there, making sure she knows every single thing going in her life.

When Father presented her with an opportunity for higher studies, she opted to be a Chemical Engineer. I was skeptical when my parents were busy buying her new clothes, I felt left out, envying her.

She completed her engineering, then migrated to New York, where she opted for Master of Science, in Syracuse University.

It has been years, we have been living in different countries now, but still looking out for each other.

We have always been shy of asking each other questions, so we hand out opinions to each other on an unsolicited basis.

If you age with somebody, you go through so many roles - you're lovers, friends, enemies, colleagues, strangers. I felt all of these roles at some point in my life, growing up with Harneet.

That's what intimacy is, if you're with your soulmate.

I have been blessed with Harneet, and found that there is no friend like a sister in calm or stormy weather; To cheer me up on the tedious way, to fetch me if I go astray, to lift me up if I totter down, to strengthen whilst I stand.

I thank you for being a part of my life.