God made us Sisters

Hearts made us friends – as the little saying goes.

My sister is almost nine years older than me. Have you ever heard that song Heros, by Mariah Carey? When I hear that song, I always think of her. From taking care of three younger siblings, to leaving home at eighteen, to marriage and college, to having two children in her early twenties, then later having two infant sons that made their way to heaven way, way too soon.

Not letting that beat her and sap the life from her, she battled the pains with nursing school while working as an aide in the ER at Houston Childrens hospital until she graduated with her RN license. Today, she cares for children with more compassion and love than any nurse I’ve ever known. Why? Because that was her calling and she listened. It took her 15 hard years to get there.

My dearest friend, that I am so blessed to have related to me. May I offer this tribute to you to acknowledge your touching grace upon my life.

I am so proud to call you my sister. Every picture I have, you are holding me. Every one.

What I remember most about growing up with you is the nights when we lived in Pickett. The rut town off a two-lane Oklahoma highway, in the middle of nowhere. Our house at the end of the road, located next to the woods, and in front of a big field terrified you. A secluded place filled with shadows. I have a feeling Ghost Hunters would have recorded some data. Eeek!

You would drag me stumbling from my brass twin bed to sleep with you in your room, in your bed – every night. You put up with a six-year old having restless leg syndrome when you hated feet on you. I guess little kid feet on your head seemed preferable to being haunted. Worse than that were my nightly accidents in the wee form. Oops.

It was your room I began to read novels from your desk shelf. My first book, Little Women, then Island of the Blue Dolphins. I can honestly say, reading in your room ignited the treasure trove of stories that call to my heart.

The other great love, your big doll house. Oh I coveted it. I wanted it for my own, I’ll admit. It was a dream when I got to play with it. The magnificent colonial house with real furniture, a velvet clad staircase, and an attic that opened up. A child’s dream home.

Listening to Barry Manilow crone from the record player in your room, or maybe it was Neil Diamond, John Denver, or all the above. They just don’t sound the same anywhere else. And why you put up with a little brat always around asking questions when you were surely a busy teenager, I’ll never know. You probably don’t either, except to say it was a long eight years of wishing for me. I treasure those days in your room.

Taking me to your Cougann practice when they had the mini camp. Being your side kick (or lo-kick), in your big drill team performance during the Friday night High School football game. What an exciting adventure. Such a privilege for a little sister who wanted to be just like you.

My big sister.

My friend.

My hero.

I watched you hold Baby Will in your arms, desperate to keep him, his loss the greatest our family has ever known, such a precious soul. Seven days of sweet song touching his fingers, kissing his head. Nothing was more heartbreaking.

Then, for that pain to pale in comparison to the sacrifices made for Baby Cody. Born after Will, strong, yet still fragile. The 24/7 quest to eradicate germs as much as possible with a toddler in tow, and another child in public school. Four and half years doing things no mother could comprehend with tubes, wires, medicines and shots only to lose him anyway. I think I would have lost my faith. No, I would have, but not you.

Instead of cowering in grief you firmly stood up for all mothers of exceptionally essential children that lived most of their life from a hospital bed. You spoke in front of hundreds of mothers, doctors, and nurses – despite your fear of public speaking – so they could better serve families of children like Will and like Cody. So they could make compassion and service a first for families of the chronically ill. A place of warmth and care for their long stays. A place for direction when they did go home armed with the confidence to care for them. All because of you giving yourself to the cause and sharing your sad story. People listened. People learned. People cared.

Your selfless service to the needy is astounding. Next, you will marry a man who has an exceptionally essential daughter. Beautiful Chelsea, a hospital bed buddy to Cody. A miracle that lived long past what the experts predicted. She will walk down the aisle, unable to speak clearly due to her trach opening, unable to walk steady with her weakened muscles. Her twisted hands will hold a bouquet of flowers while her princess dress billows around her. She will have a big smile lighting up her face. It will be as if it’s her wedding. A forever child unable to experience one of her own. It’s only through your desire, that she will. She will feel just as loved, and just as honored as any bride would be.

You amaze me.

May the love you pour out, always return to you. Thank you for being the best big sister a little girl could ever have.

Happy Birthday my friend!

28 thoughts on “God made us Sisters

  1. yet another similarity on our highway….I too have a sister 9 yrs older than me…altho, she hasn’t gone thru quite the life yours has!!! What a great tribute!


  2. Mom

    This is beautiful and now it is time to start on a book. You are very talented and God has given you a gift. Love you so much! Mom


  3. What a beautiful tribute! What an amazing woman! Sounds like you are both blessed to have each other in your lives. I feel blessed to have a little sister, even when she’s (still) annoying the crap out of me. Lol.



  4. Beautiful words! I too feel the need to hug my big sister!

    🙂 Thanks for sharing your heart…and her story (pieces at least) with us. To lose a child is a loss like no other. To stand up and help others through the same thing…amazing!


  5. What a beautiful honor to your sister . . . I feel like I’m intruding by leaving a message, but I couldn’t help but respond to the heartful words you wrote!


  6. Deedy

    I waited for my mom to have two little boys, each time begging for “My Baby Sister!”, Whom I was just sure would be the next baby! Finally! after a long nine years, there she was, an absolute little doll baby just for me.

    Mom let me help to feed her dress her, haul her around. I still remember the day she learned to walk, she was not yet one, but in little Mary Janes and rumba tights, a little blue dress with embroidery over the bodice, she looked like a tiny china doll, huge hazel eyes that filled up her entire little face, and we were at the grocery store. She was usually attatched to my hip, but I had set her down at her insistance! She took off toddling with me and my two younger brothers following in amazement behind her, shouting her on! She will always be “The Baby Sister” for us.

    What I couldn’t have known until much much later, was that God was giving me one of the most precious gifts and one of the best friends I would ever have. As adults I have walked many difficult roads, as has she, but always with her encouragement and love and support there beside me. Thanks to her, I found the strength to leave an abusive marriage and become the RN she speaks so highly of. After a surgery, in the middle of nursing school!, she took vacation time she did not have to spare and came to Houston to care for me my first week home.

    She has listened and encouraged and loved me when the entire rest of our family did not understand why I needed to become a nurse at so great a price and sacrifice. And at graduation, she was the one in the stands that stood out to me, there with me every moment. Thank you God for such a precious gift and amazing example you have given me in this woman I love so much.

    As we go into 2010 becoming Brides together to two very precious men, both of us finding joy where we thought it would be impossible, I am proud to tell people she is my sister. On June 12th she will stand at the front of my wedding, reading my favorite bible verse from our Great-Grandmothers 150 year old bible, Matthew Six :21, For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also, my treasure lies in her. My Baby Sister


  7. I am so inspired not just by your beautiful eloquent tribute to your obviously wonderful sister but to her equally heartfelt and passionate response. How lucky your BOTH are to have each other. Don’t let anything come between that love you have for each other. Nothing is worth more than that. You both are an inspiration. How truly moving.


  8. I am not sure how I found your blog, but I am a big believer in signs…………….. This was such a beautiful tribute. I have two sisters, we are never far from each other, I feel for them as you do yours! Thank you for sharing her with me! If you don’t mind, I will lurk around a while and peek into your written life!


  9. I do trust all the concepts you’ve offered to your post.
    They’re really convincing and can definitely work. Still, the posts are very quick for novices.
    May you please prolong them a bit from subsequent time?
    Thank you for the post.


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