My mom used to dress my sisters and I exactly alike. She was a busy woman, teaching, helping out on the farm, putting in a huge garden, raising three daughters, so I gather she tried to make life as simple as possible whenever she could. The offspring would be easier to find if they were all dressed alike. She’d sew our clothes using one pattern and one bolt to cloth. Voila, three Pepto – Bismal pink pantsuits. When we were really little we didn’t mind looking like each other because we were gloriously oblivious and paid no attention to such trivialities as wardrobe choices. Important events, the new batch of kittens and ironing leaves between two sheets of wax paper for example, were much more entertaining. But then around the age of 10 we started morphing into separate entities. It was important to be different. In fact we wanted to be anyone but each other. My perception of my older sister was that she was the “lady”. She wore patent leather shoes and pretty pink lace shirts. Pictures show her with trendy chokers and perky cardigans. I, on the other hand, show up in every picture ever taken in junior high, wearing the same red and black flannel checked shirt and blue jeans. I saw myself as a rough and tumble tomboy. My take on my younger sister was that she seemed pretty content with our hand me downs until she hit high school. Then she channeled the lead singer of The Bangles and rocked permed hair and big earrings. Ironically this fight to look different from each other has all been in vain. Now that we are all in our forties we are beginning again to look-alike. We have all migrated to the same hairdresser, we have similar tastes in apparel, and if our feet were the same size we’d be swapping footwear. So if there is anything I’ve learned from having sisters it’s that you can spend a good portion of your life trying to separate yourself from Club Familia but it’s really just a waste of time. Sometimes there is that element of fate that comes along with genetics that you just have to embrace.