What’s Your Story?

This is my sister Sandy. My 10-years older than me sister Sandy. I hope I look this good in 10 years. Heck, I hope I look this good next year.

This picture was taken about a month ago. I snapped it without her knowing.

Just a few weeks before, she called me she in a panic. Jen McKenn wanted to take her picture to use her for some advertising. Sandy was embarrassed and didn’t want anyone to think that she paid to have it done.

I told her right away she should do it. I had it done about 5-years ago and it was one of the coolest things I’d ever done. I reminded her and she said “yeah but you had a story to tell”.

Ugh, I know. Please don’t remind me. I have completely over told my story.

But…I got what she was saying. So I told her it’s just nice to be pampered, to do something completely out of your comfort zone.

She reminded me she hates when anyone does her hair. Oh and the makeup was probably going to be way too heavy as well.

I told her not to worry. Jenn is an amazing photographer and she she wouldn’t do anything embarrassing.

She asked if I would go with her. Excitedly I agreed.

When we arrived at the studio, Jenn’s makeup artist was there. I could tell Sandy was getting nervous. She said several times that she didn’t have a story to tell. The makeup artist asked how she wears her makeup and Sandy fumbled through her phone frantically searching for a picture to show.

The women grabbed her arm and said “don’t worry about finding something, just look at me and tell me”.

I loved the words “just look at me”. I need to look more in people’s eyes.

Sandy finally slowed down and closed her eyes to let the process begin.

I sat off to the side and watched. I couldn’t remember the last time she just sat. She is always jumping from one thing to the next.

– to make dinner

– to go to the boutique

-to get groceries

– to clean

– to pack

– to do paperwork

I have to … have to …. have to…

I notice it so much because I was in that same place six years ago. It’s a tiring place. A place where your so busy and don’t know what story you have to tell. You don’t know what you’ve done with your life. Your afraid to let go. Your afraid to do nothing. Your afraid to relax. Your afraid to have fun and just be.

I sat and enjoyed the moment. I sat and watched her with her eyes closed and prayed she could learn to do less and enjoy more. She looked beautiful there with her eyes closed. Letting go.

I kept thinking about what she said. She didn’t have a story…

I thought about so many women who think the same thing. Everyone has a story.

Sandy this is your story (from my prospective).

You left the house when I was just eight years old. We moved you to Pittsburgh and I thought it was so cool you lived in a big city. I wanted to live in a big city too someday.

You got married when I was 11. I wanted to be married too. You built your house when I was 14. I wanted my own house too. When I was 15 you had your first baby. I wanted my own baby too. In fact, when you left me alone to watch him while you ran to the store, I pretended he was mine.

You took me to get my ears pierced, boy was Mom mad. You took me to get my driver’s license. You tried to convince Mom to let me go to the prom as a ninth grader. You failed. You taught me how to shop and the times in my life when I didn’t have money to shop, you let me borrow yours.

You were in my wedding. You bought us our first set of Tupperware containers. I’m talking a huge entire set. I still use them to this day.

You stayed at the hospital with Mom and Denise until 3am when I had Josh. You were one of first to arrive when I had Aiden.

You consoled me when my third pregnancy ended in miscarriage.

You cried with me when she heard of my cancer diagnosis. You bought me scarves, took care of my kids, made me lots of soup and went with me to my treatment.

You listened five years ago when I sobbed on the phone and told you I was depressed and I couldn’t bear to go into work one more day.

You go to my speaking events. You support everything I do.

You clean Mom and Dad’s house with me and don’t make me do anything gross.

You make the best homemade bread.

You and your kids are so close they aren’t afraid to tell you anything.

You took care of your mother-in-law when she was dying.

You run multiple businesses and decorate like a designer. You dress better than anyone I know. You cry when you hear something that touches you. You, my beautiful sister, have quite a story.

Don’t you ever forget it.


For the rest of you reading this. You may be thinking to yourselves you don’t have a story either. You are wrong. We each have our own. Some are messier than others. Some are comedies. Some are tragic. Some are inspirational. No two are alike.

That’s what makes each one of us so special.


  1. You always make me cry with your stories. This was no different. The words “so what’s your story”…the first words you spoke when we met. You get the story, because you my friend, are a great listener. I’m so blessed to have you in my life.


  2. Agreed!! I agree everyone has a story!! I agree w Betty that I cry every time I read one of your “stories”! I agree that anyone that knows you is blessed to have you in their life (I know I am)!! I agree with you that Sandy always looks so put together, beautiful and busy!
    Thank you again!!


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