I was always “Dusty’s Sister” as in “aren’t you Dusty’s sister?” because he was the high-school basketball star who went on to play Division 1 basketball and I… well I wasn’t, and I didn’t – I was just well …”Dusty’s Sister”.
Then a few years ago, overweight, unhappy and unhealthy, I realized I didn’t have to be just Dusty’s sister anymore. I wanted to be notable and successful in my own right. To do things that made me happy, and not feel secondary, to my big brother or anyone else. I didn’t want to be the girl that looked at other women and thought, “I wish that was me.” I was an athlete growing up…until puberty knocked me on my ass. I didn’t have the confidence or self-esteem to push myself. I was more comfortable being in my brother’s shadow when it came to sports and athletics. My brother always believed in me. He knew what I could be. He was fiercely competitive. You don’t get to be the shortest player in Division I basketball by being lazy and doing things half-assed. But I wasn’t ready. I wanted to be different and tried to distance myself…I ended up mediocre…and unhappy. I ended up married and in a relationship that allowed me to be so. At 25 I found myself divorced and ready for change. I met my now husband and was suddenly in a relationship with someone who pushed me to be the best possible version of myself. When I was younger and this kind of encouragement was coming from my brother, I was resistant, but somehow, in this relationship, and later in life, I was ready, and willing…and like my big brother, fiercely competitive. I bought some running shoes. quit eating pizza (all the time) watched what I ate and ran, and ran and ran… and ran some more.
Now, at the age of 30, remarried, mother to one adorable toddler and step-mom to two elementary school-aged boys, I’m the healthiest and happiest I’ve ever been. I’m focused, a dedicated running coach and personal trainer. I work hard to stay fit, for myself, my family, my job, and my emotional and mental health…and maybe, just maybe…to one day beat Dusty…or should I say, “Amy’s Brother.”