Tuesday, November 09, 2010

November getaway

Went to Florida with John's sisters this past weekend for a little getaway.
Here is the view from the deck (uploaded from my Blackberry):

It was a little cold for November, so the beach was practically deserted. I like it that way!

It was a nice weekend, and I appreciated so much the chance to spend some time away with them. They have been so good to me, and honestly, they both treat me like I'm their real sister, not a sister-in-law.

It's been eleven years since I lost my real sister. It doesn't seem that long ago. She was in my dream recently; the first time I've dreamed of her since her accident. Some people think that when you dream of a loved one that has passed away, they are speaking to you.

I've thought and thought about that dream, but can't figure out what Linda was trying to say, if indeed she was speaking to me. Maybe she just wanted to say hello? In the dream, I was at a large party. I was young -- college age, I think. She was at the party, too, and came over to introduce me to her friend. The friend said, " Wow, you two look nothing alike! Your sister is so much bigger than you!"

This was always a joke between us. My sister (and my brother, too) was a little thing, tiny and petite. She wore size 0 jeans and she may have been 5 feet on tiptoe. I, on the other hand, am not tiny nor petite. She was small, dark skinned, and had poker-straight brown hair, and not a freckle on her skin. Again, so opposite of me! She used to introduce me as her "little" sister -- looking up at me, the height difference laughable...and people would get a kick out of the irony.

As I get older, I find that life is full of little ironies. After I lost both of my siblings, I was always comforted by the fact that I did have a far away half-sister that I never knew. I always dreamed of one day connecting with her on some level. Another lesson here to do the things you want to do -- you know, don't put off until tomorrow....

Kim was born when I was 11 or 12. My dad had moved to Texas and remarried a woman that I'll just say wore the "wicked step-mother" title with pride. Anwyay, I met Kim, my half-sister, when she was an infant, but never saw her after that. Things got complicated.

Early this year, I decided to reach out to her. I knew she was recently divorced and living with my Dad on his farm, in a little guest house on the property. I kept thinking about contacting her, but never did anything more than that.

On a Saturday in May (in a very cruel twist of fate or irony, or something deeper that I can't figure out), she was killed in a car accident on her way to her job at a veterinary hospital. My dad was devastated. The event freaked me out on so many levels. My dad has lost three of his four children -- one to cancer at age 40, and two to car accidents at ages 40 and 37. How does this happen?

When my brother Allen died, and then my sister Linda, I stuffed so many emotions and feelings about life and loss...I've blogged about that before. I know it's the worst possible thing you can do. But losing them and then my mom in such close succession just made that necessary.

But the funny thing is, now I'm grieving hard for Kim, this sister that I didn't even know. I am grieving the loss of what could have been and I am finally grieving my brother and my other sister -- because finally now, I realize there is nobody left for me to have that special connection with. I think that is what I am grieving.

Ah. Life is complicated and mysterious, and seems so unfair. But without the ironies and the hurts, there can be no joy and happiness. I know that is true.

That is why this trip to Florida with John's sisters was so nice. I miss my real sister and the other sister I never knew. But I'm happy to have these two sisters, too.