My Sister, My Friend

I am feeling ANGRY and so completly lost, knowing my step-sister, Belinda, will miss the birth of her daughter’s first child and all of the wonderful things associated with being a parent and grandparent.

Her Son’s daughter is already convinced that her Grandma is the best one in the whole world.  I can’t imagine trying to tell a three year old that Grandma has gone to heaven and you won’t get to see her until you get there, provided that this assumption on man’s part is even close.

I keep praying that her exit was accidental and not intentinal.  I keep thinking, I just spent Christmas dinner with her and we were laughing and enjoying having family around us and spending time together.  Funny, we were thinking that Mom, her Mom, was laying down because she felt a little sick, that happens sometimes still since her stomach surgery. It turned out that Mom was just lying there listening to the conversations going on, the two of us talking and laughing together and the girls also talking about their pregnancies and how exciting it was that they were pregnant at the same time and their children would get to grow up together also.

As all of these things run through my mind, I get angry again and then all I can do is cry and make dua for her soul, that Allah will make it easy for her in the next life and to please, please ease the pain of loss for her children and grand-daughter and her Mother who will miss her terribly for the rest of her life.  You know, you aren’t supposed to out live your children.

This event has made me look closely at my own life and to be sure that MY children know just how much I love them and how incrediby blessed I know I am to be their mother.

I look back at the memories of each of their childhoods.  They are six years apart so only a few years of thier growing up actually overlapped. It was almost like having two only children.  The years of the youngest following the eldest around and making him crazy and then the years of the usual bickering, “He’s touching me!!”, lol.  Now that I’m on the other side of it I can laugh, but sometimes you felt like you may not make it through, just let me get to the “down time”  = bed time.

Now I watch thier children doing things and saying things I prayed so hard to get to see.  You know if your children are adults, you pray that one day you will get to hear those holy grail of words, “Mom, I’m sorry I gave you so much hassel, you were right, and I love you, and thank you.” No matter what the subject is that brings those most precious of words, that confirms all of those trials and tears shed were worth every moment.

As I re-read this post I’m thinking of the first time I met my sister, Belinda, God, can it be that it was 27 yrs ago.  She was pretty young, we’d both come home to Nashville.  Her mother, Rachel had married my dad, Tom.  I had no clear memories of my father as a person, other than the Daddy figure, so when I finished my tour of duty in the U. S. Air Force, I went to TN.  She, Belinda, got there a couple of days before I did so she got the room and I got the livingroom floor.  We’ve laughed about that so many times over the years.

I got to know my Dad pretty well and Rachel too and I gained another step-sister. We had so much fun running around together acting like kids. Hell we were kids. She’s six years younger, but we hit it off right away.  My father had four wives in his life, my Mom was his second and I gained a sister with his third and fourth wives, who I am blessed to still have in my life since both of my parents have passed away now.

Many years later the darkness crept into her life and has been gradually taking her away from us all.  It finally won on the 6th of January. It’s an epidemic in this country and it’s been killing people in her life for the last couple of years too. No matter the form, pills or some other substance, it’s taking our loved ones away and we seem powerless against it.

I really thought she’d beat it a couple of times in the recent past, but somehow it always snuck back in.  I have finally gotten over feeling guilty, but it was a struggle to remember that I had children to raise and a spouse to be a part of.  I was available to her a few times while I was there for a couple of weeks at a time, each year, but I couldn’t be there to do it for her, it was a fight only she could actually fight herself.

I will stubornly hold in my minds eye, everytime I think of her, that Christmas dinner, sitting across from her laughing and talking and how good she looked.  She’d had her hair redone in that cool color thing she does where the underside is dark and it blends lighter to the top layer. She’d lost just a little weight so that she was comfortable in her skin and her make-up was perfect, as usual.  He hair was naturally wavy and just above her waist, she looked so damn good.

I keep praying the anger will fade so I can just cry and get it out of me, but the anger keeps creeping in and then the tears follow. I guess I’m being a little selfish as my other step-sister would remind me, that Belinda is no longer suffering through the addiction, she’s finally free of it!

I will miss hearing what her grand-daughter said to her the last visit they had together, she’s such a whiz-bang that little one. We hadn’t had a chance to talk about the next grandbaby other than being excited about waiting to learn if it will be a boy or a girl soon.

If you’ve ever lost someone you love, you know there are stages of grief.  I will be glad when I can wake up and not hope that it’s not true and not need to struggle to get through the next few moments when I can hopefully tuck it back into that little place in my mind and pretend I’m good and get on with the rest of the day.  Getting to that place takes time and determination.  Just because I knew it was inevitable if things didn’t change doesn’t mean that any of us was prepared. Unfortunately for me I’m getting better at this struggle, having lost so many people I love, not to the current epidemic, but in my life, so many gone now.

Usually this happens to us as we get up there in age, but I’m only 50 and it started happening when I was 8 with my biological sister, firends, husband, grandmother, mother, father and now my 3rd sister.  We will blessedly be able to keep the 2nd sister, God willing, now for many years to come. She won her battle!

I will close for now as my eyes are full and it’s getting hard to see and it’s time to pray again, inshah Allah, life will go on with the renewal in our children and grand children. This life is so short, we have to grasp every moment and remember to enjoy it fully.



Filed under Family

2 responses to “My Sister, My Friend

  1. So sorry for you and your family’s loss. I think it’s a good thing you have a place to write about your feelings and share them with others. Sharing our pain and grief is healing. Blessings to you in this difficult time.

    • Erica,
      Thank you so much for your words of comfort. As you can tell, it’s been some time since I’ve been to this post.
      Life is renewing it’s self as promised. My sister’s daughter will be having a son in late June early July.
      I knitted my fingers off real fast to meet the dead line for the baby shower and finally have the “blankey” to mail to her.
      I’ve been blissfully watching your posts also, beautiful as usual. Your insights and pictures are a soothing haven to stop into, thanks again.

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