As you know, Sister flew home from Rwanda for a visit last month.
We immediately began a whirlwind of weddings. First, we flew to Ohio to unite with the Kishman clan, Tisha’s family, and celebrate my cousin Allison’s marriage to her love, Troy.
This is The Matriarch, my grandma. We call her “Dama,” but her real name is Alice Flaherty Kishman. You can read about her here. This is Mandy giving her a rosary she bought in France. Listen to me. If you meet Dama, just start talking about rosaries. Or Mother Teresa. Possibly the Pope. Chocolate, perhaps. These are the only safe topics.
I sneaked behind them and took this picture because you guys, THIS IS WHAT DAMA REALLY WATCHES. ALL THE TIME. This is NOT a Saturday Night Live skit. It’s a REAL channel. But I don’t make fun (I mean to her face) because those daily rosaries she says are the only explanation I have for my survival. Pray on, Dama.
This is what Sister and I do. We get ready. And Sister always asks me over and over, “Is this dress too short? Are these heels too high? And I always ask, “Can you see my zits? Will people notice I’ve worn this dress to every event for the last ten years?” And we tell each other… NO, SISTER. YOU LOOK PERFECT. Obviously, the true answer to those questions is always Um, Yeah.
You guys, please look at my Mama. I mean, really. This woman just received her first social security check. And no, no surgery. Tisha is proof that the fountain of youth is staying open hearted and loving well. I must admit that I am really very excited about my genes, as is Craig.
The bride, my incredible cousin, Allison – and her Troy.
And then . . . Wedding #2, the following weekend. Meet Mike and his bride Brookie, who has been Sister’s best friend since they were three years old.
During the wedding, Mandy’s friend Hollis gave an incredible toast about sisterhood, and I turned around at my table and shot this picture. Because I knew Sister would be looking at me like this. (What Up, Bums!)
Love you, Sister. Love you, mama. While I was staring at this picture, it struck me that it is possible that Sister and Tisha have their own relationship, independent of me.
While I put together this post, I showed the pictures to Tish. She got a little sad. She misses her aunt. Mostly, she said, because nobody else gives me gum. So we made a paper chain to help us countdown the days ’till Mandy gets back. Yes, I’m in yoga clothes. It is very important to plan a yoga class immediately following art projects with the girls. We made 70 links. 70 days till Aunt Mandy comes home. Which made for a pretty long chain.
When Chase got home from school he said, “Is that thing supposed to make me feel better?” Whatever, Chase, I was trying to do a cute mom thing.
Cant wait ’till we get to this part. Can’t wait.
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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