I watch siblings as they interact with each other. I am a sister. I have blood sisters and a blood brother. But I also have sisters of the soul, who I consider my friends.
Through the years, I have realized that the only thing that I can hold on to are my memories of being a sister. I am not sure if I am good at being a sister or if I was too selfish and trying to survive a house full of siblings when I was younger. However, as an adult, I work very hard on being honest with the women and men in my life.
I watch my daughter, Anissa, with her brothers and how in a heartbeat she would tell on them and the next she would protect both of them with her little body during a hail storm.
I have an older sister, Lenka, a younger brother, Alvin and my youngest sister is Kendra. We are all adults but we have one thing in common that will never change, we cannot deny that we are related.
In my last edition, I wrote about my memories of growing up in Brooklyn,NY and learning how to knit. My sister Kendra called and said, "I just read your article about the family… I laughed so hard. I wasn’t having a good day but after reading your article my spirits rose."
I was so happy to hear from her and happy that everything was all right. I heard my cell phone ringing and I could not get to it fast enough. Ever since my father has been ill, I have been under a certain veil of uncertainty of seeing the numbers "631" on my cell phone display, which is the area code where most of my family is in Long Island. Whenever the phone rings in the middle of the night the same uncertainty crawls down my spine like fingernails on a chalkboard.
You can tell what is going on by Kendra’s voice, she is usually happy and cheerful and always sensitive in an interesting sort of way. My little sister is in her thirties but she will always be the baby to me. She always tries to make the best of every situation and I know that what she is going through right now with my father being an amputee, having diabetes and high blood pressure is not fun.
She was always the free fun loving one of the "Haynes Girls". She always had friends and always seemed to have a good time. She was very friendly, a quality which I learned from her.
During extended family squabbles, I would listen to her rationalize over what was right and what was wrong. She always went through great lengths to provide harmony in everyone’s life.
What a burden? Me, I was unaffected by most things that happened. But Kendra always seemed to be close by but not directly involved. Most of the family gatherings happen at her house. Not too much since my father got sicker. I know that she misses that, she loves to entertain to the point of buying new hand towels just to put that extra touch. She knows exactly what family members to invite and what they should cook and what ingredients they use in their dishes to make them extra tasty.
She knows exactly when to bite her tongue and let others vent and that the storm will be over soon. Hopefully, she is always thinking that. She is a mother now so a lot of her time is geared towards taking care of her two children. If anyone deserves to be a mother, she does.
I wish that the world was her canvas and she was the artist. We would all be in fabulous company and always be privy to great parties. I know she catered and decorated my wedding party. She knew who, what, when and where and we all rely too heavily on her to comfort all of us and that she does with hardly any complaint.
My little sister is the best, so as we approach Father’s Day, I wanted to tell her how much I appreciate her being there to take care of our father. Sometimes we need to look at our families and thank those who are doing a lot for ill parents. For Father’s Day, men handle your business. I would suggest that you inquire about life insurance and long term care, who cares if you are in your thirties. I would suggest that you get a will or trust, especially one with the "if I were to become incapacitated….." provision.
Tomorrow is not promised to anyone but we have the capability of making people’s paths a lot smoother but keeping in contact and providing love and laughter. Telling someone that they are appreciated and loved helps too. It is sometimes those little comments that become larger than life and help keep the blood pumping through your veins.
Big ups to my baby sister, Kendra.
Rina N. Risper