She is the third child of four, the youngest girl. She has bright red hair and if you ask her where her daddy is she will wiggle her pinkie and tell you, “wrapped around this finger.” And if she’s laughing, you’re going to laugh, too. She was the tattle-tellingest, teasingest kid I ever knew growing up. She was Dad’s favorite. We all knew it. But I think she was our favorite, too…at least out of us girls. I mean, come on. Look at this face:

Who could not love this kid? Monika was born when I was five years old. Denise and I were so close in age that we just referred to her as the little one. When Lloyd was born two years later, they were “the little ones.” Sometimes they still are.

Monika flew up to Baltimore to visit me when she was in high school. I took her to Lollipalooza ’92. We had a blast. We went to the show in Reston, Virginia with a friend of mine from work. Tony brought some friend of his from his barracks named “Roach.” I never did know Roach’s real name. It had rained four days straight before the concert and the whole field was covered in mud. Monika lost her shoes in it and partied on barefoot. We bailed when the headline band came on. They were drunk. We decided that they should be called “The Luke Warm Silly Peckers” vice “The Red Hot Chili Peppers.” They sucked that night and got outplayed by Pearl Jam and Soundgarden.

Monika flew out and spent a month with me after I had my second baby and I had orders to move to Georgia AND my husband flew to Greece to visit family there. She had been working in Alaska for the Summer, stopped for a week or so in Texas to be in our step-brother’s wedding and then flew out to Baltimore to stay with me during my hectic, postpartum pack out. (Say THAT 5 times really fast.) We had such a great visit and she bonded quickly with my kids. And the month flew by so fast, even with a 16  hour road trip to Georgia. She was gone before I knew it. And I missed her terribly.

While in Texas last year, I got to go out to her house a few times and hang with her kids. They are super awesome and she is a fantastic mom. I love how laid back she is with them. Probably not as laid back as I am with mine…but you know, she’s only got two. I have five and by now, I just don’t give a shit to get involved in every tattling detail. I figure by the time hers are teens her policy may change.

Monika has introduced me to some of the coolest music ever made and funniest writers ever born. She is an over-achieving, volunteer addict and recovering lawyer. She is a creative, hilarious, spiritual, sensitive, caring
member of MENSA, who will still dress as a super hero in order to attend a friend’s costume party and somehow convince her husband to take the kids to Paris on holiday. She loves me with all my flaws and embraces my crazy with hers. She and I have grown so much closer over the last two years. I am truly inspired by her and I look to her as one of my heroes.

I love you, Monika!

2 thoughts on “My Little Sister

  1. Way to go Nikki I just cry to read this – I love you all (&all my n's & n's) You all have been blessed indeed with the love you share!!


  2. right there with you. I love Monika like she is my sister, my life is better because of her. She has always been the my go to friend when the chips are down. Recently, we have reconnected (not that we ever lost our connection), but when things were so hard and i didn't know what to do…. she was my go to girl. really helped me survive. love you, Monika!


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