Don't grieve alone; 14,000 members and growing
It's been one and a half years since my sister and best friend left me to be in heavenly places. This coming weeking will be the second birthday of hers that I cannot celebrate.
There are some nights when I lie alone, I can see her so clearly. I see what she looked like when she smiled, what she looked like when she slept, and what she looked like when she was with me. We both had a content look on our faces. We were happy to be in each other's company.
I also think alot about that last night I saw her. Even though we hugged and kissed like all sisters do, there was some tension between my sister and I...mostly due to it being my fault.
I remember my mum calling me a few days before my sister passed. She told me,'Your sister has the flu quite bad, why don't you go and visit her.' I told her ok, but I was so busy with work and my husband was studying, that I thought it wasn't necessary. She would get over it. It's just the flu, my mum does this all the time. There had been too many times when they'd scared the bejeebers out of me and I'd gone running like a mad woman to check on one of my family members, only to find out everything was fine. I was being run ragged at the time with demands from all directions, and I was really physically and mentally tired and drained.
3 days later I get a call at work that my sister's in hospital with a very bad chest cold. She still seemed so fine when I went to see her that night. She jokingly told me that she had to land herself in hospital in order to see me. I smiled and told her it wasn't funny...why didn't someone tell me how seriously ill she'd been. I'd just been told she had the flu! Now when I look back, I know that I'd gotten caught up in my own personal troubles and work, and I'd neglected to take care of my sister. It was just once...all it took was one moment for me to turn my head in another direction and take my eyes off of her, and she was gone. I'd kept a steady eye on her for years after her seperation with her husband. I was with her daily. When she found love again, and started making plans for her future, I thought I could focus on my life again. I started working harder and didn't go out as often. I don't know what I was trying to achieve. A better life? Make something of myself the way she had in her career? I don't know. All I know now, is that no matter how great the success or the achievement, it would never have made up for not having a sister anymore. Everything feels so damn useless now.
I tried to connect with her in our usual way that night, but she was having none of it. She had her boyfriend and her future in laws around her and they wouldn't give me any time alone with her. I sort of stood off to one side and felt uncomfortable. I guess I deserved that. My only sister had been ill and I hadn't bothered.
She once told me she was proud of the young woman I'd become...I think I disappointed her deeply that night.
I live with this heavy, painful feeling in my chest everyday thinking that if I'd just taken care of her she would be alive today. If I'd taken it a little more seriously, she would be alive.
I've messed things up so badly...for my sister, myself and my parents. They trusted me to take care of her. I didn't just fail her, I failed them.
These are the thoughts that play over and over again in my mind. I've stopped talking to everyone I know...I just work. I don't even keep in contact with my parents anymore because when I talk to them there's this guilt that the only reason they're being forced to talk to me, is because she isn't here. They're forced to accept a future with me in it, instead of her. Because of my stupidity, they lost a beautiful daughter.
My marriage is falling apart, and I'm completely alone. Yet through it all...I still love my husband, my sister, and my parents more than anything in the world.
People have hinted at some pretty hurtful things...or just looked at me differently. It's as if, why her and not you?
The thing is...I wish that too. More than any of them.