Born on the 5th of July

Me and my beautiful Betsy Lee.

My sister was nearly a firecracker. Born on the 5th of July. As a little girl, I believed that we held sparklers and watched those weird smoky snake things wiggle in honor of the birth of Betsy Lee Riggs. Watermelon and popsicles and fireworks shows just for her.

I will always believe that she deserves nothing less in celebration of her.

Betsy is our family’s token blond. She’s a peacemaker. She loves Jesus. She is the mom of triplets (!!!). She’s the wife of a musician.

She is a believer in the best of people.

Betsy is a good listener, a good advice giver, a soothing encourager. She’s a balm to those with life-raw hearts.

I could write a collection of stories about her. Tell you about the crazy scrapes we got into. About how she talked me (an asthmatic) into running track with her for 2 years. I could tell you about her strength, physical and emotional. About the times when she talked me out of giving up (see asthmatic running track).

But those are stories best told with her sitting next to me, a couple cups of coffee on the table, and a room full of loud laughter. I’m sure she’d love to have you in on the story sharing. She’s quick to make friends.

What I will tell you is this, God didn’t make a whole lot of souls like hers. And I can’t believe I get her for a sister.

Now, this isn’t a plug. But it’s a tribute. She’ll understand.

There’s a scene in Paint Chips that I wrote with her in mind. A family is walking home from church in the rain. The one sister (Cora) is grumbling, complaining, frustrated. Then a car passes, splashing the already soaked family with a puddle. Cora is angry. The other sister (Marlowe) yells out, “We forgive you!”.

If I’m Cora, Betsy’s Marlowe.

Betsy is beautiful straight through. And, if you know her, you are already aware of that.

She’s not perfect. She’s late. All. The. Time.

But I can handle that.

She’s worth waiting for.

Happy Birthday to my Beautiful Betsy Carter. I love you so much.



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