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Sunday, January 30, 2011

A Letter to My Sister on Her Birthday

Dear Beautiful Girl,

Happy Birthday to the smartest, sweetest big sister I could have ever asked for. You would be 38 today if you were still with us.

Why doesn't this get any easier?

I still feel your presence often. I know you hear me when I talk to you. So many times, there are things that I know you would appreciate, and I just have to share them with you. I still have times when I will find some funny thing on the internet and my first instinct is to email it to you. I can't pick up the phone and call you, but I can say it to the sky and know it will get to you.

I remember when I made the decision to marry Surfer Pirate. He was definitely more your type than mine, and I can still hear your laughter about that, even though you were only there in spirit then. But your laugh was still as clear as day. You thought that was hysterical that I was marrying a blond. And after watching his new house flipping TV show, I can see you were right - I really DID marry Vanilla Ice!

I wonder what you do up there in Heaven while you wait for us. What fills your time there? Are you playing with my little angel baby? Are you watching with pride while your niece reads book after book - reminding me of you and how many times you had your nose in a book. Did you hug your little nephew and give him advice before he was born? There are so many times that I see his little eyes moving around - looking like he's watching someone that I'm not aware of. I whisper to him "Are you looking at your auntie?"

Four weeks from today, I will be 35 - the last birthday you saw in this life. It's such a strange feeling to know that I'll soon officially be outliving you. That's really hard. We were supposed to be still sharing stories in our 80's. Joking about family reunions and pickles and Perrier, talking about James Madison and how much your student loved him, laughing about how you had to name the one kitten "Indianapolis" just because I thought Gary was a good name for the other kitten, and telling each other "Give me a spoon right now please! NICELY!" This wasn't how our lives were supposed to go. We were supposed to have babies together and visit each other regularly. We were supposed to be able to call each other when things got tough or when we had good news to share.

But I know you were needed in the next life. You had work to do there. But I still have the right to feel more than a little robbed.

This is hardest on Mom. I know you know that. Parents aren't supposed to outlive their children. We cried together over you yesterday. She's having a pretty stressful time right now, and it sure would be nice if we could all be there again - sitting on her bed talking all night long. It seemed like nothing could hurt us if we were all together as a team.

You would be so proud of your niece and nephew. Pirate Munchkin is so smart! I know Heavenly Father knew what he was doing putting that child into our family. I have a hard time believing sometimes that she's not from our own bloodline - she's so much like you. I have no doubt that she'll watch over her little brother as well as you always watched over me. And Pirate Baby is such a strong little guy. Just over 5 weeks old, he's already starting to master having control over his little neck. In looking for a picture for this posting, I found pictures of both of us as babies and realized Hey! He DOES look like us when we were babies! He's not just a carbon copy of his daddy after all!

Anyway, as usual, my thoughts are sort of rambling. If anyone knows how much I do that, it's you. But I just wanted to tell you I love you and I miss you. Life is pretty hard without you here. Tonight, we'll have birthday cake in your honor. Hope you're okay with Funfetti cake and Rainbow Chip frosting. I love me some Rainbow Chip. To use your words "It's the Yum."

But I'd rather be standing in line at Softies with you instead.