My sister became Mrs. Bishop this Saturday.
It was the event of my summer, the lingering thought behind every waking moment, the deadline around which other goals stopped and started.
And, now it’s over.
And, to be honest, I feel sort of let down.
I had a difficult time with it on Monday. I switched around my schedule to accommodate the time I would need to take off for the wedding weekend. I worked doubles, early mornings, shifts with difficult co-workers I normally avoid. I did not attend the Intensive Out Patient program, accidentally missed my psychiatrist appointment, was 15 minutes late for weekly counseling, and missed a planned hypnosis session as I was frantically finding shoes in the godforsaken, unyielding mall.
I was playing with fire.
And was burned on Monday.
It was partly due to hanging out with my sister, and her new sister-in-law to be on Sunday. Her sister-in-law is a medical student, about to marry an engineer, with two dogs, and is about five years younger than me. They spent much of the time talking about their mutual wedding planning, about social SNAFUs that the guests had committed, about ways of disciplining their dogs, and about financial planning apps they use to plan their vacations, honeymoons, car repairs, eating out funds.
And I felt alienated as fuck.
I felt a sense of tremendous inadequacy: too poor to have a dog, living paycheck to meager paycheck, the mood and anxiety disorder robbing me of the dream of being a doctor years ago. I also felt, very strongly, that though I was standing right next to my sister, that I was miles and miles away from her. Separated by very different lives, values, pasts, personalities. A chasm of unbridgeable distance growing ever wider, rubble of the jagged edges falling into the abyss with each choice, each step we took.
And though I could still see the face of the girl who was once my best friend, the girl I taught to bike, to swim, who played endless games of beanie babies, “dysfunctional” house, rich girl, poor girl, the girl who baked endless batches of cookies with me, who served as my de facto therapist, who introduced me to my first boyfriend, her spirit was gone.
In its place was a young woman about to get married. A young woman who wished to have, and had, more in common with her future sister-in-law, than with the awkward older sister of her youth. It felt like a rejection. I was being replaced by a better, more functional, more mainstream model.
And with this, came a gigantic sense of unfairness. I do not wish harm upon my sister, but watching her become the bride she always wanted to be, in the wedding she always wanted, living a comfortable middle class life, living out her dreams, made me very angry.
I guess it’s because I have had to give up on so many of my dreams. Because there have been so many overwhelmingly bad memories, and, you know what, I am pissed that I ended up with the three diagnosable mental illnesses, the introverted, demeanor, the years of bullying, the highly sensitive nature, the low self-esteem, and all the bullshit that came as a result of that.
And she never has had to experience ANY of that.
She once said to me, “I don’t think we would have been friends if we weren’t sisters.”
I know it’s not all Bipolar’s fault. I know there are conscious choices I have made that separate us, and that I am not less than her. It just feels that way because society’s predominant ideology places her on a higher rung than me, and it’s hard not to sense that.
Oh well, all I can do is accept the person I am, the diagnoses I have, take what self-determination I have, and go from there.
I can’t be jealous of her forever.