Today marked the 11 year anniversary of the day my sister’s van hit a combine in the fog, killing her instantly, and sending her off to wherever God takes His children. I wondered what specific day of the week she died on only to discover it was actually Tuesday. So today was actually the exact day she died 11 years ago.
Morbid, I know. But bear with me here…
My oldest niece took the day off work so we could celebrate the life of her mother by enjoying a relaxing day together. Little did I know that lunch would cause havoc in my intestines and ruin half the day. I swear I used almost every restroom in every store we pasted by!! We were in a shopping district and I found myself spending more time in the restrooms than shopping! After a long, rough day I found myself the only one still awake. I began to look back at my life as I scrolled through social media.
I have lived 6 years longer than my sister. She was 30 when she died and I will be 36 in April. During the years without her a lot has happened that I have been unable to share with her or talk to her about. When I had my second daughter, I needed an emergency c-section. She was a nurse and I know she would have been there for me during such a difficult time. But she was gone already.
I cannot help but play the what if game every year on October 30th. But I can’t do that anymore. It drives me crazy and just makes me feel sad.
I have learned some things about handling death since losing my older sister and brother (2007 and 2017). These are in the order I thought of them:
1) death is something we all face therefore since I know that I need to be prepared. Have a living will, God-parents for my children, and yes, assurance for my afterlife.
2) never, ever, ever bother to ask “why.” It only brings pain. Knowing why doesn’t take away the hurt of the loss. My sister is still gone.
3) I am not the only one who lost someone. My sister had kids, a husband, parents, 3 half brothers, aunts, uncles, etc. I miss her and am hurting and I am not alone.
4) Accept that she is gone and love the moments she was here. No, she isn’t coming back, but I have to think of the good times we had instead of struggling every day to be happy because I focus on missing her.
5) Someone else cares and I am loved. God does. He is there the moments I need and want Him, and waiting for me when I don’t. He is there and He loves me.
6) I must avoid ruining everyone else’s day just because I feel unhappy today. I know my sister died on October 30th, 2007, but the stranger checking my groceries out for me does not know. So I shouldn’t react unkindly toward the strangers who I think should treat me with kindness. I get what I give.
7) I remind myself every time I think of her (and my brother), I will see them again. It is within me to feel and know that we will all be reunited someday. That brings me hope that no human can take away.
8) there is no good day to die. Though some circumstances make it easier to let some people go, there is never a convenient time for a loved one to die. Hands down, it is never something I welcome. Death, for me, is the worst suffering of life. My sister died on my half birthday. I didn’t care because we never celebrated that day. But it kinda drives my point home…
I hope some of these observations provided some insight for some of you. And I hope I wasn’t too morbid on one of my least favorite days of the year.
Be blessed with a long and healthy life… emphasis on healthy!
Maggie A. ‘Spoon
(Written and published from my phone. Please forgive all random errors and spellcheck failures. I did my best on the fly.)