What do I want them to be when they grow up? Sisters.

Tonight I did something I haven’t done in a long, long time. I went to a show at the Iron Horse Music Hall, an intimate music venue in the center of town that I frequented a lot in the days before I was a mom. It was the 20th anniversary show for the band the Nields, fronted by sisters Katryna and Nerissa. When I first moved to Northampton they were part of the extended circle of music business folks who warmly welcomed me into their community because they were friends of my brother, then an alt-country/folk musician. I loved the Nields, and in those good old days went to many of their shows at the Iron Horse (including the famous night the lights went out.)


Tonight was the first time I’ve seen the band play together since becoming a mother to two daughters. Two daughters who happen, of course, to be sisters. Sisters who, at ages 6 and almost-8, sing together, play together, giggle together, and finish one another’s sentences, thoughts, and maybe even breaths. Amazing how that can color your view of a performance featuring two grown sisters. Sisters who also sing together, play together, laugh together, and just so clearly love one another.

One thought ran through my head the entire show (other than “oy, is my back hurting from sitting on this bar stool….have bar stools always been this uncomfortable?”)  – I hope my daughters grow up to be just like the Nields. Not because I especially want them to be musicians, or writers, or performers, or any of the other things Nerissa and Katryna do so well. But because I want them to find as much joy and love and friendship and sustenance in each other when they grow up as they do now. If Nerissa and Katryna can do it, maybe Ella and Zoe can too.


I never had a sister, though I always wished I did (in addition to my wonderful brothers, of course.) If you have a sister, are you close? Even if you aren’t , you know, in a band with her? How do you connect with one another in your adult lives?

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Molly @ Postcards from a Peaceful Divorce

posted June 12, 2011 at 8:04 am

Oh, Amy, you tugged at my heart strings with this one. I am so close to my sister, yet I miss her terribly since she is in California. Maybe if we started a band I could convince her to move here.

I had a fantasy of having two girls, just like my family of origin. Luckily, my two are super close. I hope they stay that way…

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posted June 12, 2011 at 8:39 am

Caught my attention right from the title! I have two young adult children who have been, and are best friends. It’s a brother/sister combo, but their friendship brings me so much joy. And comfort! He’s even going to stand amidst the bridesmaids at her upcoming wedding…cause she doesn’t want him on the guy’s side, but her side! I pray that what they have continues to sustain them through life. Great post!

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Sarah Buttenwieser

posted June 12, 2011 at 10:14 am

I linked to your post:

I felt much the same, grateful for sibling love (& friends as family love too). Sisters, at times for me, complicated! But siblings… all for them (& I always wanted a brother!).

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posted June 13, 2011 at 1:57 pm

My sister is my best friend, and even that phrase doesn’t really cover it – our relationship is everything you said, joy, love, friendship, sustenance. In some ways we’re very different, in others very similar, and none of that really matters in the end. I honestly don’t know what makes us so crazy about one another, probably a bit of survival as third-culture kids, which is an experience no one else in our lives can relate to. But I think it has a lot to do with family culture. We are all very close and think of ourselves as a collective, basically. I can’t imagine that your girls won’t be close, with your warm and loving family life!

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posted June 13, 2011 at 4:20 pm

Amy, I had no idea you were at the show! I am so honored. I love what you wrote. I know your girls will grow up to be best friends. They have you for a mom. Lucky them!
Love, Nerissa

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