How to Survive Your Sister Moving Across the Country

I’ve always had a complicated relationship with my sister.

Growing up, we were adversarial. I mostly blame this on my being an insufferable bitch and her monopolizing the bathroom we shared. I was a haughty, know-it all older sister. She took 45 minute showers. I had to get up an extra half hour earlier in the morning just to be sure I could dart in and out, before she got in. Forget being able to do my hair or makeup in the bathroom. I was lucky to be able to pee and take a five minute shower before school.

After I went to college, we became great friends, though. She even lived with me a few years before she went to college when she was trying to figure things out. She was the maid of honor at my wedding. She introduced me to Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She read YA long before I ever dreamed of becoming a YA librarian.

She doesn’t pull punches or filter what’s she’s saying. She can be brutally honest and sometimes cruel. She will fiercely defend what she believes in and will challenge you to better articulate your way of thinking.sisters

She will go on adventures.

Like moving to Northern California with her boyfriend.

I’m going to miss her. A lot. Whenever I have an argument with Mister BS, she’d let me vent and drink boxed red wine with me. I’ll miss running into her downtown after work, and ending up having cocktails. I’ll miss early morning summer walks with her.

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BUT life must go on.

Stages for Surviving Your Sister’s Cross-Country Move

Book a plane ticket to visit. Now. 

I can always change the dates in the future, but I took advantage of some good deals at Southwest and just went ahead and booked a weekend trip in a few months to visit. It takes the pressure off of when you’ll see each other next.

Form a virtual book club. 

I think she was most anxious about not having a personal librarian when she got a new library card. I’d just put things I knew she wanted, like the next volume in a graphic novel series, on hold for her when I ordered them. Sometimes I’d just add something I knew she’d get a kick out of to her reserve list. I (along with our other staff) were always around to help her find her next great read or what she was in the mood for. Still, I set her up on my family shared Kindle account and told her we’d have to talk about books at least once a month.

Make her join Twitter. 

I kinda hate Facebook (which is actually where my sister’s boyfriend works and why they moved out to the Bay Area). But I am on Twitter allllll the time (either monitoring the library account or tweeting about books on my personal one). So, convincing my sister to join Twitter meant we were always connected and made it easy to share interesting links or funny gifs from any device.

Remind yourself you didn’t actually see each other IRL. 

I mean, we’re both busy and we both travel for work, so even when we did live in the same town, it wasn’t like we were hanging out every day. It was amazing if we saw each other once a week, but sometimes it was more like once a month. So it’s not THAT different from visiting, and when hanging out feels like a vacation, it’s much more fun, anyway.

Send little packages and letters. 

I used to do a bookish pen pal thing with other bloggers. It’s fun to get mail. Now I’m just going to send notes and fun gifts to her instead. I already got a stack of comics to send her, and I may selfishly be hoping she’ll grab a bottle of Pinot Noir from one of my favorite vineyards when she’s heading south into the Santa Cruz Mountains.

I miss my sister, but I hope this makes it a bit easier.

Do you miss siblings that live far away? How do you stay in touch?

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