"More sibling than friend"

Wanting and I continued with our impromptu talks this evening over the dinner table. As usual, our conversation topics were randomly endless. Somehow we got to talking about how we made friends with people and how we became friends. She began to describe how she felt about our friendship.

WT: “… you were never a friend that I chose. I mean, it’s like I never had a choice…”

I gaped at her in laughing horror.

WT: *registering my expression* “NO LAH! That’s not what I meant!…”

I tried hard not to burst into mirth at her attempt at recovery while maintaining a wounded look.

WT: “I mean it’s like how I never chose my brother you know. I’ve always felt that you were more like a sibling than just another friend!”

Awwww…. That was a splendid recovery, don’t you think? For the rest of the evening, I felt like laughing every time I thought of her “I had no choice” statement. But that’s how destiny or 缘分 is, isn’t it? And just as expected, when I told Zibin about it, his response was, “Does that mean you forced her to be your friend?” […no more than I forced you to become my husband, can? bleh.]

The sibling description is more apt than you would expect. With Wanting, I’ve often wondered what our ‘click factor’ was. We didn’t become fast friends… our temperaments and interests were too different for that. I had felt she was guarded, and she had been a little anxious about keeping up with my exuberance and eagerness. I’d always liked her a lot, but since there were no sparks and she already had several good friends here, I hadn’t expected very much to develop between us.

But… somewhere down the line, maybe after we started living together, we began to develop more chemistry. It was subtle, quiet, and unnoticed by thick-headed me who have always relied on verbal expressions to know how people feel about me. Occasionally though, our conversations gave me surprising glimpses of how well she understood me.

A big turning point came when I went through a particularly difficult year and she stood steadfastly by my side the entire time. At a time when words felt empty to me, my eyes were opened to the many quiet ways she cared for me. Several times in twists of fate, I discovered how she’d been protecting me without my knowledge, and in ways I wouldn’t have expected any friend to. In a subtle but powerful way, I finally understood how someone could love and understand me without communicating it to me.

She looked out and cared for me just like a sister would. When I felt broken and unlovable, her wholehearted acceptance and support touched me. From her I learned to comprehend and trust in unspoken love. From her I learned many things that were foreign to my nature.

More sibling than friend? So wonderfully true. She’s a friend who knows the good and bad of me like my true sibling and loves me nonetheless. It’s a lovely way of describing what has become one of the most important relationships of my life.

Though I think for the rest of my life I will never forget that she told me that she had no choice in becoming my friend! :P

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