Merci Jiliane! June 18, 2008Posted by solangek in Gracias! Merci! Thank you!.
Tags: Grandma Susan, Jiliane, lecture, parents, thank you
It was my sister’s birthday the other day, and she turned 21. As is usual on birthdays, I remember her past, compare it to her present and think about her future.
First of all, due to a significant age difference, I have never been very close to my sister. We have very different personalities, tastes, gifts and burdens. We are in different stages in our lives; she is just experimenting with living away from home with her boyfriend and I now have an established family with two children. We have had very different lives in general: I enjoyed the best of our parents’ relationship and she was about 10 when they broke up, while I was away from home, and 18 years old. I often looked after her (and our little brother) when I was a kid, even though I didn’t like to. I’ve never really known what to do with little kids, anyway.
All of this is very nice, but what would I say if I knew I could never see her again?
Well, she’s lively and quick, a right jolly young elf. It is easy to have a good time with her, and she used to write poetry. I’m not sure if she still does, but I hope so. She dances and likes to wear sexy clothes, which is a good indication that she feels sexy. But she also wears make-up, which indicates that she doesn’t feel as pretty as she should. She has the beauty of youth, as well as her own Jiliane beauty which will never fade. She reminds me a lot of our father, in that this physical world, what you wear, what you have and who pays attention to you seem to be important. She and our grandmother used to be quite close; they both have strong personalities and my sister loves Grandma’s soup. I think Jiliane enjoys being with Grandma because she takes care of her appearance, she enjoys shocking strangers once in a while, and they enjoy each other’s conversation.
Jiliane decided not to go to university after graduating from high school, as tends to happen in families which have more. The parents make sure their children have all that they need, and in turn the children grow up thinking that they don’t need to try, or work hard in order to fulfill their dreams. Children who grow up with everything don’t have any idea of how hard their parents work to make every day possible, so they think it is easy. When they have the opportunity to go to university… the kids think it isn’t necessary. Well, it isn’t necessary, and while it certainly doesn’t guarantee a good job or a bright future, it is certainly harder to “get there” if you don’t take the first step and get the tools, the skills, or the framed paper.
So basically, Jiliane is now in the limbo stage of life, a diamond in the rough… after moving out of her mom’s house, moving in with her boyfriend, tasting “freedom” and responsibility, and not trying to move up in the world. Everything still has the shine of novelty; everything is possible, so why make a choice now? Perhaps she is afraid that if she makes a choice of what to do with her life, she closes doors. Perhaps she isn’t sure of what she really wants to do yet. Perhaps she’s too in love… and is just enjoying coupledom. Whatever it is…
Sometimes I would like to ask her, “What are you waiting for?” I would like to tell her, “The world is so big; you are still so free, you can do anything… go for it! Take courses! Join an interest group! Learn to paint, to make stained glass windows, build a house – anything!” But I don’t think she would listen to me, because nobody pays attention to other people’s experience. It has to happen to you before you start moving. I know, because I’m the same way.
My husband told her once that she is a caterpillar waiting to turn into a butterfly. Now, at twenty-one and on her own two feet, she has the chance to turn herself into a butterfly. I hope she doesn’t wait too long, because she will probably be a gorgeous butterfly, one of the most beautiful. I love her, and I want her to be the best that she can be.
Happy birthday, Jiliane – Many Happy Returns!