If I'm remembering correctly, the last time that all three of my full siblings and I were together was in 1996. It's also the only time we've all been together, except for when we were very young children. In 1996, the occasion was our mother's birthday, and it was a surprise. She hadn't seen me in several years, and hadn't seen my younger brother since he was taken away from her for adoption at the age of three months.
Last year my older brother and sister, who are fraternal twins, turned 60. They decided on a co-celebration and invited me to join them. Unfortunately, their birthday falls at a time when it just wasn't possible for me to get away so, reluctantly, I had to decline.
So this year, as *I* turn 60 (and just how the heck did THAT happen?), there was some chatter about them coming to see me to formally acknowledge my official over-the-hill-ness. In the end, though, we decided it was easiest if I traveled to them. So, come April, I'll be heading off for a second sibling reunion. I'm actually glad I'm making the trip this year rather than last, as my younger brother (who also didn't attend last year) will be able to join us!
I've met my sister's husband, but haven't met my brothers' wives, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to get to know these new-to-me family members.
And I'm grateful that we all actually consider each other to BE siblings. Legally, that's not the case, as adoption has officially made us "cousins" -- but we refuse to use that term. We are, now and forever, brothers and sisters. Siblings. Family.
Happy Birthday to me!