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My Sister

February 16, 2010

My sister had a brave heart. She was beautiful and childlike. She was a fighter who would not give up. She was trapped…caught in an unseen web that was too sticky for her to break free from. They had her where they wanted her.

My sister ran away from one cult family right into the arms of another…but she didn’t know. Neither of us did. At that time, we were both amnesic to our true history.

I wonder…did she ever figure it out before she died? Did she finally remember her childhood abuse…the younger years? Did she remember “everything”…or just the minor “stuff” she used as an excuse to run away?

My sister kept trying…in recovery and out of it. I remember her telling me how she had to fight with the recovery people to get her a counselor. She kept saying she needed one, but they did not want to give it to her…not even in those fancy, high class, expensive recovery places.

Was it because it was being paid for by his parents? After all…counseling might mean that she would remember something…something important…something damning…about them. Maybe she would finally wake up to the truth about her boyfriend and his parents…the family she lived with. Or…maybe she wanted a counselor because she already had an inkling of the truth? I will never know in this life.

This is the time of year that I especially think of my sister…as her birthday approaches in a couple of days. And I wonder about her death…and sometimes, I wonder if she even really died…or if they have her holed up somewhere. It didn’t look like her. And my father would not leave me alone with her. If he had…what would I have done? I don’t know. We weren’t supposed to touch the body…but I think I would have. It did NOT look like her. I had seen her within the last year.

My father said it did, but he had not seen her in years…so far as I know. But then…it is not exactly like I came from a truthful family. Ha! “Family”. What is THAT supposed to be? Not the caricature I grew up with.

It’s funny how everything seemed to be so good…on the outside looking in. All the memories I concocted about growing up seemed so OK…yet I was so not OK.  Stories my mother told me were woven through my mind with photos from the family albums. Childhood. Sure…that was my childhood…only…it wasn’t.

I remember the day I suddenly realized that it was all a lie…a fantasy. It has been so long now that I cannot remember if it was before or after I realized that I could not remember growing up with my sister. It is as if she did not exist…yet I know for fact she was there…in the same house with me.

So many things are buried in the mists of amnesia with a tiny flash of a snippet here and there that blazes through so fast that I can barely figure out what just went by. Yet…those flashes ARE there. And I do have the photographs. My sister was there. Some of the photos I took…yet, I can barely see anything beyond the photos themselves. Whatever I see is more like a surreal picture in my mind.

She died on my birthday. At least…I am told she died. I saw what was supposed to be her body…but it sometimes haunts me to this day. I know she was becoming “inconvenient”. I would not put it past them to agree behind closed doors while pretending to hate each other to me. Two families…warring for her body. It was sick. It was insane. It was my sister.

I will never get the chance to get to know her. Her living…except for the few times in the later years when I finally did meet up with her…is buried deep within. What I do remember makes me wonder if I really want to remember the rest. I don’t know. Maybe I should just create a life with her just like I created a life of my own? No…I want to honor her by remembering the truth…if I can.

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8 comments

  1. I am very sorry about your sister…


  2. I’m so sorry about your sister. I just stumbled on this. Its really moving. I can’t imagine life for you. Or memories for you. But you seem to have “comfort” –“com-forte” “with strength”


    • Thank you, Lydia. Interesting take on “comfort”.


  3. This is such a brave, heart-wrenching post. I am so sorry. But, I am also grateful for your courage and allowing us to use this for THE BLOG CARNIVAL AGAINST CHILD ABUSE. I hope that you join us again for the carnival. It travels around to different blogs, but info about it can always be found at my blog. Take gentle care.


    • Thank you. I appreciate being able to participate.


  4. My sister says that she doesn’t remember much of her childhood. A few years ago she asked me if I raised her because she doesn’t remember our mother being around when she was a child.

    I have enough memories of abuse for both of us. I sometimes ( just sometimes) wonder if not remembering would be better. Reality is I know that not remembering isn’t better. The questions of not remembering would drive me crazy.

    Thanks for sharing this post. I feel the sadness and uncertainty. My sister and I are very close today. We weren’t for many years.


    • Thank you, Patricia. I sometimes wonder…from the flip side if remembering would be better. Then again…when I do get snippets…it usually isn’t good. So…maybe not remembering is better. I really don’t know. I remember enough…know enough…to get a good idea of what is behind the veil. Truth is…I am not in a good place to be able to go there. I have no place to safely process that kind of stuff. So…for now…it is better that it remain behind the veil of amnesia.



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