One of The Husband's and my first dates was to my brother and sister-in-law's wedding. I'll never forget dancing with The (not quite) Husband in his Air Force dress blues, he looked down at me and said, "you aren't going to be this crazy at our wedding are you?" That was five days after The Husband and I met.
Of course, The Sister-In-Law and I have had our moments. No baby sister wants to look at her brother giving all of his love and affection to another woman. Who's going to take care of me now? Regardless, I used to fight my brother screaming, "Treat her better you asshole! You're going to loose her if you don't stop acting like such a jerk!" She became my rock. I'm grateful that my brother married a woman who is probably one of my best friends on this earth. She's a Marine's wife and has her own set of worries, yet when I hear her voice on the other end of the line I can feel her smile and my world begins to relax. I often get family pictures in the mail and I think: 'wow, The Brother and I don't look anything alike' and then, 'my God, she's beautiful. The Sister-In-Law should be on the cover of a magazine.' I recently realized that her beauty doesn't just come from outward appearances. I look into her eyes and I see a beautiful soul shining out from a camoflauge of aqua marine blue. She is a woman who will love me no matter what I do, she'll smile that gorgeous smile of hers and tell me everything is going to be okay. She has the patience of Mother Theresa which is evident in the mild (but incredibly adorable) temperment of my nephew. The Sister-In-Law and The Nephew are those mom/son combos you see at Target with the child asking ever so politely, "Mom? May I please have a new toy car? It needs a home and I'd be ever so grateful to give it one." HUH? The Nephew is (almost) four years old, but he's so sweet and grown up, he behaves as if he's forty, not four.The Sister-In-Law is my rock. She grounds me. She took The Brother, just a boy and made him a man. The Sister-In-Law is a woman who demands respect. A woman of faith, stature and a pillar of strength. The Sister-In-Law told me the other day as we were driving through the Country Club Plaza that she admired my strength... huh? I'm a mess and this woman who I admire without fail is telling me she's proud of me. Wow. Mark this day down for one of those breathless moments in time.