Wednesday, October 30

Monticello, Virginia, and Sophie

Last spring, I got a phone call from my sister. I knew already that she was supposed to find out whether or not she got into the hardest school she applied to, but what I didn't expect was a phone call from her as she logged into her account online to see if she got in. I squeezed my eyes shut and bit the inside of my cheek until it bled. I was completely nervous and went over in my head what I was going to say that would be encouraging if she didn't get in. Sophie, you're wonderful and everything happens for a reason? It's UVA's loss, not yours? You did everything you could? Those sort of things. I waited impatiently as I heard her type in her user name and password in silence.

More silence.

"Sophie?" I asked.

And finally, I heard laughter. A sort of surprised kind of laughter that came in short breaths like she was figuring out for herself how she was feeling. I wasn't sure if she was experiencing the laughter you feel when you get bad news leading to hysteric tears or if it was a happy astonished sort of laughter.

"Sophie!? Did you get in?!" 

I swear, it was one of the longest moments of my life. And then she said the six words I'll never forget that in my 19 years of being an older sister to her exemplified everything I knew about her in one question.

"Why would they let me in?!"

It wasn't fake and it was completely genuine. She said it through her continued laughter and her disbelief perfectly showed how humble of a person she is.

Whereas I am sometimes self-indulgent and idealistic, my sister is humble and selfless. She worked ten times harder than I did in high school and got one hundred times the reward. She deserved everything she got because she earned it. The school that is her perfect fit is the one she was accepted to and given a hunk of change to fly across the country to attend. Last weekend, my Grandma, Mom, and I all hopped on separate planes and got to visit her in Virginia where she's now been for two months. I finally got to see her in the place where she didn't believe she stood a chance of going to. 

Sophie, I am proud of you. But I am (also) absolutely and sincerely happy for you. I am so happy that you got yourself to Virginia and created the life you have now for yourself. I only got to see a snipet of your life and I'm sure there is a lot I will never know about it. But from what I saw of you there, you stood taller than I've ever seen you. You fit there. And it is exactly what you deserved to get.
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Miche said...

What an awesome post (and photos), thank you for sharing! Congrats to your sister!

Miche from Buttons and Birdcages

Emma Jane said...

What a gorgeous campus. Ugh I love colleges.

I'm a lot like you in the self indulgent and idealistic aspect. I need to learn to better myself like your sister, who sounds phenomenal. Like YOU :)

This was some great writing. I was so anticipatory reading it I had to do that thing where you physically have to cover the text with your hand so you don't peek to see what comes next. Awesome.

Tightrope to the Sun

Jennifer said...

This is so awesome and that campus is gorgeous. I'm jealous.

Yay for humility!

Brissa said...

I do love me some strong sisterships and (obviously) mozzarella sticks.

becca said...


and so so happy for your little sister! that is wonderful. and your writing is clearly quite compelling as well. best of luck to her!

and let's meet up nearby somewhere!

petal and plume said...

what a lovely, lovely post!

Ashlyn said...

So I don't know if it is because I am overly hormonal or emotional right now, but this actually made me tear up. I have a (much!) younger sister, and I know your feelings of pride so well. I'm so happy for your family :).