On Weddings and Miracles


The day my sister was born, my family – my mom, my sister’s dad (my stepfather at that time), my brother – and I were in our van driving through curvy, hilly roads in Napa, California. A car coming from the opposite direction hit us – head-on. My mother was eight months pregnant.

What I knew then: my mom was airlifted to the hospital. I rode in the front seat of an ambulance. The guy who hit us was a patient in the back. My grandmother came to the hospital to get me and my brother. Our dog ran away in the hills and we couldn’t find him.

And then I had a sister.

What I didn’t know until my sister’s stepmother gave her speech last night is just how much over the speed limit the car coming the other direction was going. I didn’t know how severe my mom’s injuries were. I didn’t know that the doctor told my sister’s father that he might have to make a choice – my mother or the baby. And I didn’t know just how miraculous my sister’s birth REALLY WAS.

My sister is 22 – and I’d never heard that full story until last night.

It was the hardest I’d cried all day.

I hadn’t realized how close I had come to losing my mom. How close I had come to have never ever HAVING a sister, let alone the amazing one who I stood beside yesterday as she married the love of her life.

I had no clue.

My sister is an awesome young lady – and despite the ten year age gap, the older we get, the closer we get. While we were kids, it wasn’t ever like you picture a sisterhood – I mean, I changed her diapers and we shared a room. When she learned to climb out of her crib, she used to come over to my bed and wake me up in the morning. I remember moving from California to Michigan – and how in every restaurant across country, she’d spill something on me. I remember how I’d have friends over and she’d want to hang out with us. I remember letters from her when I was in college. She was there to meet her nieces shortly after each one was born – and as an aunt, really, she’d be pretty tough to beat. She’s truly awesome. The love she has for my kids brings me great joy: as a mom, there’s nothing better than knowing that the people you love most are cared about by others who will protect them as you would.

The wedding was beautiful – my sister made a radiant bride. She was so nervous – but so beautiful. Her groom, despite having woken up with a nasty case of the flu, rebounded nicely to actually enjoy the day. My daughters were beautiful flower girls. The DJs were amazing, the dance floor was the place to be – and this morning? My muscles ache. My eyes burn. And wow, I can’t believe all that planning, all that drama – and now, we can take a big breath of relief.

But while there’s a sense of relief for the wedding and the planning drama being over – there’s also the breath of relief for how truly lucky we were to have not lost my mom and that we have this amazing miracle of my sister.

About sarah

Sarah is a book nerd, a music lover, an endorphin junkie, a coffee addict. Oh, and a goof ball. She writes, she tweets, and she sings off key.


  1. Wow, that had me in tears !

    I’m so glad you didn’t lose your mom or sister either. ((((Sarah)))))

  2. Beautiful story!!! Glad that your Mom and sister are both here and that you can all enjoy each other!

  3. Wow! That is a terrible story – and a wonderful one. What a miracle!!

  4. Wow…that’s just…wow!

    I’m so glad everything went well. Many congratulations to your sister!

  5. oh wow, sarah. what a miracle indeed!

  6. I am so glad you still have your mom and your sister. I cannot imagine my life without my sister and mom. In 2001 my mother had a bout with breast cancer, and, thankfully, she’s been in remission since then. Like you, every year my sister and I have grown closer. We’re 18 months apart, and though while growing up we had pretty separate social lives, now we consider ourselves eachother’s best friend!

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