My baby cousin, (the second littlest) is getting married! It’s an exciting time for all of us when someone you love is going to tie the knot and it’s twice as special when you love them like a sister. Girls in our family are a rare species. I grew up with a broomstick and a purple mask being a Ninja Turtle in the backyard. (Of course my mask was purple – I was a girl and I certainly wasn’t allowed to have a cool weapon.) When my cousin was born when I was twelve I thought all of my dreams had come it once. She was mine! I was going to get this one. She would watch Disney Princess movies with me, we would dance and sing and I would cover her in make up. The fact that she was just as comfortable outside with the slingshots, motorbikes and sandpits is irrelevant. There was another girl and she was on my side.
Just last month, she sent me a picture of a diamond and it was on her left hand. She is young, twelve years younger than me, and my left hand is decidedly naked of adornments. On a bad day, it could have hurt a little but it didn’t and this was my little girl. She’s been a grown up since the day I let her dance to Sweet Transvestite so many years before she should have. She’s been a grown up since the first time she had to pick me up from an unspecified location in the city. She’s been a grown up since I treated her like one when she was still a tween.
Her other half is gem. He’s been part of our family since his mid teens and it’s hard to imagine life without them together. Unlike many couples I know batting twice their age brackets they have this weird ability to complement each other. He knows when to ignore her tantrums (she gets that from me) and she knows when it’s best not to ask. I look at them and hope to high heaven that at some point in my life I will find myself in a relationship that as just as grown up as theirs. So in September… of next year… I will marry them. I will be the one that gets to say ‘husband and wife’ and start her next journey into a grown up world she belongs in. I’ll just stand and wave from the edge and hope that if I still ask nicely enough she’ll pick me up when I can’t find my cab money home.