Sunday, December 26, 2010

Dear Cathy

Dear Cathy,

I've spent the last few days in complete shock that you are gone. What is up with that? I knew you were sick, but this dying thing was a little too extreme. And after all the years that I sat and listened to your fears of some horrible thing that would happen to you- a elevator crash, plane crash, airbag explosion, SARS, Swine, anthrax... let's face it, pretty much everything in the world you thought would kill you.

Now you are dead. I guess I was wrong. Not about the elevators, though. C'mon. That was nuts.

I want to call you. I want to talk to you about all the shit that's been thrown in my face since you died. How you said I was horrible to you. Really? I know better and so did you. Why? Why did you say those things? So our brother would take you in? He would have taken you in no matter what. Sure, he hates me. But you didn't have to go there to be accepted.

I get telling your lawyer I was holding out- any time you could wrangle a few extra bucks out of your trust, you did. Whatever it took. But I would have helped you craft the letters. Always did before.

I was there, Cathy. This summer? You said to me you wanted me to treat you like I would want to be treated. I said then, that's the problem! I like to be left alone. I like my alone time, privacy and rarely want anyone to do anything for me. You were the opposite. We worked that out- you could have yelled at me again. We would have worked it out again, as we did so many times over the years.

I found some of your writing today. You wrote, "for all the dreaming that my family were dead and all was mine, I missed them. I really missed them. But I never felt that way about my sister. She was always there for me. We had our fights and disagreements. But we were always there to help, to hold, whatever was needed."

Yeah, Cathy. We were that to each other. I knew all the men, the pain, the user friends. Why at the end did you shut me out? Did you think I would be mad?

I wasn't. I could never stay made at you. I could never say no.

I did what I could. Offered to buy you the house behind us only to have you say you didn't like how it smelled. Offered to hire help only to have you say you didn't like strangers. Whatever I offered, wasn't what you wanted. You wanted to be cared for 24/7. And I have three kids, and yes, you knew the kids would always always come first. Always.

All the people who called you here, offered to take you out to dinner, to come visit and you always said no. My friends cared about you. They wanted to spend time with you.

You made people laugh. It was a gift. But you wouldn't take it in- why? Why did you choose isolation? Sure, the house behind us was old and overpriced but you would have been steps away.

I know. You wanted care all the time. Even if you lived with me? I had a job, the kids went to school, there were hours of driving each day, school events, practices, appointments... my life is busy. I've worked hard to create a community. I love busy.

It wasn't black or white. It was all a murky gray. I know I didn't do what you needed me to. I tried. I know you eyed something that was better for you and headed to it.

I supported you, Cathy. I knew. I knew it was for the best. I also knew it wouldn't be perfect, and you started complaining after being there a week. I told you to chill out. They were adjusting. Even though we had our moments? As you wrote, we were always there to help, to hold. We always talked to each other. All the time.

Remember how pissed that made Mom? Ha! She took a lot from us but couldn't take that away.

Remember when you called me last year, scared, sick, in Savannah? I came down on the first plane, Cathy. I kept coming down until I convinced you to come back with me. We sat there for ten days and grieved your beautiful home, what you wanted for so long.

I went to every doctor's appointment until you didn't want me to anymore. I know. I was always freakishly optimistic. I couldn't stand the thought of losing you. All those trips to the emergency room and how we laughed... oh my. You'd tell me you were fine and I knew you weren't. I'd have to drag you down there.

We'd make lists of things you wanted to do before you died. We'd talk about how you wanted to find true love. We'd talk about the jerk moaning in the room next door and could we get some drugs to shut him the fuck up?

I'm sorry I didn't hold you enough. I'm sorry you felt you needed to push me away to go to the next place. I knew Boston wasn't your home. It's mine. And just as we were so different- hello? pork rinds? really? ew. Okay, I'll eat half a bag but ew. No, I will not buy Riunite and add a sugar cube to it- I believe that will land me in hell. I'm sorry I could not find stevia in the raw. Are you kidding me? a sponge for the counters and a sponge for dishes? You lived with cat piss all over your house for years and you're worried about sponges?

Ah... my seester. You really are a big shit. And yes, I am a little shit.

I miss you.

I love you.

I want to call you. Why are you gone? Please come back. I gotta tell you about Ben and his bronzer, Jake asking to shave and Zachary's, aka Sully, fit about having his picture taken. How Calvin, the kitten I got for you as you said you needed to hold a kitten one more time, was licking the shrimp I left unattended for thirty seconds.

I want to tell you how Zachary holds the cow pillow every night to his chest and Jake has been over to see the motorcycle. Hello? a motorcycle for a ten year old? Good thing you're dead or I'd kill you. Ben? Well, he keeps hugging me a lot.

Just came in and gave me another.

I miss you. I sat in that hospital with you and watched you breathe, waiting for you to sit up and tell a joke. To make a silly face or use one of your goofy voices. Come back. We aren't done, yet. No where close.

I love you. I know it was the last thing we said to each other. As we always did. I love you my seester. I love you, too my seester. Talk to you tomorrow.

It's tomorrow, Cathy. You're not here.

Oh my seester. My most wonderful seester. (You say, you are my favorite seester. I say, I am your ONLY seester. You say, aren't you lucky!)

I miss you.


Blogger Rob and Carrie Boone said...

Wow, I was flipping through Blogs while avoiding the bedtime protestd from my little ones and yours came up. Cute title thought it may be worth a read after so many Holiday this and thats. Your letter has me tearing up. So tonight, as I out my kiddos to bed I will think of you, and of Cathy and hope for some peace.

6:59 PM  
Blogger Sue J said...

Sara, we lost unnamed partner's brother to cancer in 2008, and we still keep expecting him to show up at the front door. I don't pretend to fully appreciate the feelings that come with the loss of a sibling, but I know it is complicated and deep.

8:21 PM  
Blogger Sandra said...

I read Ms. Moons blog on occasion and saw your blog on her list.

I am really sorry for your loss. I have read your other two posts as well. You wrote so movingly of your sister and your relationship with her that I feel she loved you as much as you did her.Take care of yourself.

9:25 PM  
Anonymous donald said...

i hope you can find some peace in the coming days.

losing someone you love so dearly is always difficult, but having it happen during the holidays seems to add yet another dimension of pain and sadness.

i know you want to be alone, but if you want to be alone with someone else, come downeast for a a couple days! sitting by the ocean has always help to revitalize you in the past.

7:51 AM  
Anonymous Ian O said...

Love you and miss you and thinking about you.
I can't believe it myself, I' feeling a blow and I barely knew Cathy; I can't even imagine losing a sibling.
Love and hugs.

8:28 AM  
Blogger weese said...

i know these feelings well.
i have found my grief has taken its sweet time. and now... close to three months later i feel it profoundly.
find comfort in that there are others out there who understand these feelings. i know i do.

9:30 AM  
Blogger the princess said...

I am so sorry for your loss, your family is in my thoughts and I hope that you have some peace.

9:14 PM  
Anonymous Laura said...

Sara - I have been reading your blog off and on for years....and Im sitting here in tears - amazing how blogging can touch us the way it does. We put so much out there - and never realize how it affects others.

I am SO sorry about your sister.

Im sending all of you good thoughts.


7:03 PM  

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