Knock Knock Knock: A poem of memories

Photo Credit EmmaWeissPhotography 2013

I know women can survive without a sister. I’m glad I never had to try.

Knock, Knock, Knock*

She was just an “only.”
I made her “oldest.”
She loved me before I was born.

Brunette? That’s her.
The blond one—that’s me.
We wore matching Easter dresses and carried matching purses that Mama stitched up on her Singer™.
We spoke our own language. No one else understood.
She loved me before I was born.

Old Maid, Monopoly, Careers.
Chrissy and Velvet. (Hair-growing dolls.)
Roller skates, not blades, and bicycles with banana seats and long handlebars that had windmills on them that spun wildly when we raced down the hill.
We laughed.
She just loved me—before I was even born.

She was always the teacher.
I was always the student.
Except since we’ve grown up and life’s grown up: now we take turns being the teacher, being the student.
White Lake. Yates’ Pond. And hotel pools.
She saved my life when I fell in.
That’s how much she loved me–ever since before I was born.

She had the top bunk; I had the bottom.
We fought our way through the teen years.
And clung to each other when college pulled us apart.
We held each other’s flowers when we said our “I do’s,” and each other’s hearts through each nine months.
We loved each other’s. Before they were born.

When I need her,
When she needs me,
We are already there.
Because she loved me before I was born.
And I’ve loved her right back.

*Knock, Knock, Knock: an action done by knocking three times on the headboard of either the top or bottom bunk that prompts the hearer to knock three times on a headboard in response. Most common meaning is “I love you/I love you too,” but can also mean, “You awake?” with the response or lack thereof answering the question. During thunderstorms or troublesome times, could also mean, “Don’t be scared/I won’t if you won’t.”

By Aileen MItchell Lawrimore

Aileen Mitchell Lawrimore is a mother x 3, wife x 35 (years not men), minister, speaker, writer, retreat leader, and lover of beagles and books. She has a lot to say.