The Essence of Sisterhood
I am an only child. This is probably why I’m such a bitch. At the same time, I never missed having a sibling, even when my parents ruined my life by splitting up. And getting back together when I was 16. The reason: my cousin Cat.
We fought over everything.
We fought over Michael Jackson. Who loved him more? She used to lord it over me because they share the same birthday August 29th. I got the last laugh on that one. But she also won the pop star battle. Cat was way into Madonna before I was. For me it was Cyndi Lauper. Not that Cyndi Lauper doesn’t rock. But Madonna is Madonna. Cat is also thin and fit with the best skin and stronger nails. Hated her for it. I could never grow my nails when growing your nails was the thing to do. And walking behind her tiny ass makes me crazy.
As girls born only 11 months apart, we battled constantly. We battled for grapes. We battled for the etch-a-sketch. She’d push her food around her plate and even if she didn’t finish she wouldn’t let me eat it. I was there for her when her father died too soon. She was there for me when I made out with a big nosed dude called Norbert in the stairwell of an apartment building.
We suffered through silence at the dinner table when my dad, in a foul mood, wouldn’t let us talk about the Cosby show. She laughed her ass off when I was training to be Mary Lou Retton at the jungle gym and had to be carried home after spraining my ankle. I held her when she decided to cut her hair short and hated it, crying all the way home on the bus. Somehow she still speaks to me after a I broke an expensive bottle of skin cream at our aunt’s house and blamed it on her. Would you believe she actually swallowed it because she knew I’d get the beats way worse than she would?
And now we’re in our 30s, emailing every day, 10 times a day, pretty much about the same things we used to whisper to each other at night under the covers on weekend sleepovers: she inundates me with her Rafael Nadal obsession, I complain about my nose and the size of my bottom. She protests over the not-so-conservative-you’re-so-skinny-you-should-wear-this dresses I keep forcing on her. And we dream together about one day eating at El Bulli.
This is Cat with our “niece” Kayla.
“Because she is my sister, and therefore one half of me”. From The Other Boleyn Girl (terrible movie).