My Sister..I miss my sister.
I woke up today thinking about her and it just brought tears to my eyes. Over 20 years ago, my sister took her own life and that is an event that changed my life forever.
I remember the day it happened. I had the day off of work and I was at home when I got a call from my brother. He said that he received a phone call from our sisters boss saying that she had not shown up for work, which was way out of character. My brother asked me to go over to her place and check on her because she lived close by. I can remember him saying to me " don't go inside of the house", which, thinking back on it now, is spooky. Almost as if he already knew. Well, I did go in and what I saw was not an image that you want burned in your mind.
I think I pretty much went in to shock after that. I can remember sitting in my boyfriends car and having a weird sort of tunnel vision. I couldn't see on either side of myself, just straight ahead. I remember someone bringing her cats out to me but nothing after that point. At her wake, I remember saying "son-of- a- b*****, and then going silent and not speaking again for a good six months, and whats sad is, the rest of my family didn't seem to notice, or if they did, saw nothing wrong with it. I guess they didn't know what to do with me. Even though I'm the youngest, I was always the strong one, and I guess having the strong one crumble, threw them for a loop. I didn't sleep for months,I was angry with God for letting this happen, I had blackouts and I just barely existed from day to day.
One morning, I was on the bus, don't remember where I was going, probably nowhere, and I was thinking about my sister and I said out loud to her" you're a real idiot". After that, the flood gates just opened. I had to get off of the bus because people were looking at me like I was crazy and maybe I was a little at that point. I walked for miles, I screamed and I cried and got it all out of my system and then I was MAD. Mad at my sister for not sticking around. Mad at her for just giving up. Mad at myself because I didn't see the signs. Mad at myself because I didn't save her. One ironic thing about this is that shortly before her death, she had just taken her CPA(certified public accountant) exam. She was so worried and nervous about the results. Two weeks after her death, we found out that she had passed. Top of her class.
It was a rough period for me but I somehow made it through. Sometimes I still get mad at her. There is so much she missed out on- nieces and nephews, achieving her goals, basically just the miracle of life. There are times when I can talk about her and remember the good times without crying, and then there are times when the pain is so raw just like it was the day it actually happened. I have a copy of my brothers wedding video and I love to watch it because i can see her and hear her voice. That is the last time I can remember seeing her happy.
I miss my sister.. today and always....
There’s an elephant in the room.
It is large and squatting, so it is hard to get around it.
Yet we squeeze by with “How are you?” and “I’m fine…
And a thousand other forms of trivial chatter.
We talk about the weather.
We talk about work.
We talk about everything else…
Except the elephant in the room.
We all know it is there.
We are thinking about the elephant as we talk together.
It is constantly on our minds.
For, you see, it is a very big elephant.
It has hurt us all.
But we do not talk about the elephant in the room.
Oh, please, say her name.
Oh, please, say “Betty” again.
Oh, please, let’s talk about the elephant in the room.
For if we talk about her death,
Perhaps we can talk about her life.
Can I say “Betty” to you and not have you look away:
For if I cannot,
then you are leaving me alone…
in a room…
with an elephant