I know you hate being called Emmy so I spell it differently; I hope you can hear the difference.
Last Thursday evening, I watched you walk across the stage through the lens of my finicky camera and I was proud. You have worked so hard these past 18+ years of your life, and you have had learned how to suck it up and keep going when things have gotten tough. You are amazing. It may be nostalgic to look back and remember all that there is to remember from this year: your last first day of school, your last band competition, your last jazz band performance, your last last day of school. But I am excited for all that you have yet to experience: your first day on your own, your first day of hard college classes, your first cross country meet, your first hall meeting, your first 9:17, your first roommates, your first lifelong friend. You have ended many 'lasts' but you have so many 'firsts' to uncover. It's like a scavenger hunt, only it comes to you naturally. Despite the circumstances, I'm thankful I get to stay here an extra year to be here when you need me, to be here when you need to cry or vent, or for when you want to bake something and need my stove. I'm excited to be on the sidelines and watch you experience life as yours - not mine, not mom's, not Nathan's - yours. Your life. You have so many ways to grow and so many things to learn, and I am pumped to see what your life looks like. I want you to know and remember that I love you; I am your sister, and I will always be here for you. Congratulations, Em'ii - ya did it ;) I love you!
One proud big sister,
(Because I also hate being called Jessie, but Jess'ii is okay)
PS. Your face here is priceless.