A 30+ years Big Sister- Little Sister friendship story

Sara Sanchez recently donated to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bay Area in memory of her Big Sister Louis Newman. She shares her inspiring story:

Lois came into my life when I was eight years old and my parents’ marriage was in turmoil.  My father’s job kept him away from home several days each week and my mother was busy discovering herself.  That meant that my sister and I were often home alone.  We were loved and cared for but lonely.

Lois would come and take me away for a trip to Kmart to get ice milk and the excitement of a blue light special. Or she would take me out to dinner with her husband at a local steak & potato restaurant.  Later on, she became my sister’s Big Sister as well and she would take us to play miniature golf or visit a bookstore. She also took us one wonderful time to Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm.  During the holidays she would take us to local festivals and we would decorate their Christmas trees together.  These memories of us together are very precious to me.

Simply put, Lois made me feel special, loved, and worthy of her time.  These may seem simple gifts but they were gifts very important to a young girl who often felt her own family was otherwise occupied and unavailable.

Our relationship changed over the years. I had many mis-adventures and struggles she was not privy to but that did not diminish our relationship. Even though we saw less of each other as I grew older, I invariably got a call on my birthday or Christmas. We would catch up and laugh and she would tell me she loved me.  When I became a young woman our relationship changed again. When we talked we would often share stories from our lives simply as friends.  We listened, offered each other encouragement, and wished each other well.

Lois was a living expression of a sweet and kind woman who gave simply to give. She shared freely without condition and laughed at life’s simple sillies.  I have been blessed to have known Lois. She will forever be a part of me.

sara sanchez


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