sam cleasby family photos

It’s National Sister Day

Today is National Sister Day and so I thought I would do a little post about my big sister Lisa.  She lives in Sydney, Australia and I miss her every single day!

We are ten years apart in age and when I was younger, I always looked up to her so much.  I don’t remember her ever being anything other that a grown up and so that shaped our relationship as she was my big sister and I was the baby.

sam cleasby family photos national sister day


When I was a little girl, it was Lisa’s bed I would crawl into if I had a bad dream, Lisa’s hand I wanted to hold, Lisa’s life I wanted to mimic.  I think it carried on like this for a long time, with our relationship being unequal in some ways as it was her I turned to for help and advice rather than it ever being the other way around.

And then when she got pregnant with her daughter just after I found out I was pregnant with my third child, it really shifted the balance.  All of a sudden, I had experience that she didn’t, she needed to ask me advice and it changed us beyond big sister/little sister to really good friends.  She was with me when I gave birth to Thom and when her daughter Gracie came along, I was a proud aunty to a wonderful little girl.

Sam Cleasby family photos

Lisa decided to move to Australia almost five years ago, she had a job opportunity and had always lusted after a life down under since her travels ten years before.  When she told me, I was both devastated but equally excited and pleased for them.  We lived in the same village and our kids went to the same school and so we saw each other several times a week.  I remember weeping loudly whilst trying to smile and tell her that I was happy for them.

Since then, I have visited them over in Australia.  It was just three months after my first operation and it was the thing that kept me going through recovery.  They have been back for a couple of visits too, but I haven’t seen her in person for nearly 18 months and it is hard, I miss her every day.  I wish I could just walk down to her house for a cup of tea or a glass of wine, I wish I could call her at any time, rather than having to check what time it is in Sydney.

woman with an ostomy bag swimming ileostomy colostomy

She is my inspiration and the person whose opinion of me matters the most, I want her opinion and her approval as she is so important to me, she is smart and funny and caring and kind and I know that when she gives me advice, it is always in my best interest.  Of all the people in the world, I care the most about what Lisa thinks, I want to make her proud.

Since she moved away, my health deteriorated massively and the surgeries began, and so she hasn’t been here when I have been at my most ill.  I know this was really tough for her and she felt sad that she couldn’t be by my side.  But we found positives in the situation, she always says that she is my night shift, that I have lots of people to talk to in the daytime, but when I can’t sleep and am struggling in the night, it is her daytime and so she can be there for me when no one else is.

sam cleasby family photos national sister day


You have to look for these positives when faced with a tough situation.  We talk on messenger often and FaceTime each other whenever we can, the internet and social media mean that we don’t miss out on the important parts of echothers lives.  I can see her photos of a night out in real time, I can watch videos of my niece and shots of their days at the beach on my phone as they shoot them!  We have come up with our own codewords and made up silliness through years of messaging each other, when words have autocorrected to become something daft, they often stick.  One thing we have is a word for when we say hello. It is never both of our mornings or night time at the same time and so we greet each other with the word ‘nighting’ as it works for us both.

sam cleasby family photos national sister day

Any way, I just wanted to share a bit about my brilliant big sister today when I saw that it was National Sister Day as I love her very, very much and I hope she knows just how important she is to me.


Thank you Lisa, I love you!



Sam xxx

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