Sunday, October 19, 2008

My Sweetest Sister-Friend

She had a gorgeous dragonfly tattooed on her upper back, resplendent in greens, yellows, blues, purples and reds. I wish I had a photograph of it. Its wings spanned just between her shoulder blades, a moving, living work of art. Graceful, subtly colourful... very much like the woman she was.

Three years ago, my sister's life ended in an instant. She was killed in a highway accident on her way home from work when an SUV, being driven by a woman stoned out of her mind on gawd only knows what drugs, crossed over the centre line and hit my sister's car head on. It was an older Toyota Camry that had been our Mum's and it didn't have airbags. She took the steering column straight in the chest and it crushed out her life in a split second.

It also crushed my heart and soul. Laurel and I were four years' apart in age, but very close together in spirit. From the time I was in my mid teens, we were friends as well as sisters. We hung out together for years, becoming more and more like best friends rather than just sisters.

Even now, three years later, the pain of that loss can overtake me, causing me to sob my heart out. I have also lost both my parents, but they both died of diseases that took time to claim their energy. Time that allows you to come to terms with the loss, knowing they would no longer be suffering and in pain, and then death comes as a relief as well as a loss.

But the tragic ending of my sister's existence allowed nothing.... no coming to terms with the emptiness that will always exist in my heart. No reasonable explanation for her passing. No time for acceptance.

Only the hollowness remains, the piece of my heart that died along with her that day, the loss of contact and companionship with her.

But the memories of her love, her laugh, her kindness and generosity, her wisdom and humour, flow through me like a constant trickle of warm, sweet water, soothing and smoothing. Her laugh, her face are reflected in her daughter, who lives a 10 minute walk from me. Even more than that, her spirit lives on in both of her children. Both her son and daughter have become such loving, wise and warm people as they have grown. She lives on through them and I am blessed to be part of both of their lives and the lives of their families.

Today is a day of revisiting the past, of remembering her smile, the warmth of her gaze, the closeness of her hug. The love that emanated from her for all those who shared her life is still palpable to me and I hold it close to my heart, wishing beyond dreams that it could be herself that I hold close.


  1. I remember reading a previous post about your sister and her tragic passing. I think its wonderful that you keep her spirit alive by remembering her and keeping her in your life.

    Sending warm hugs your way.

  2. Mago: Thanks... I try... really I do.

    Anna: Yes, I have posted about her before. She will always be in me.

    Thanks for the hugs. And right back to you! An exciting time is straight ahead for you!

  3. There will come a time when the bitter memories will fade, and all that will remain will be the sweet reveries...

  4. This is a beautiful and heartfelt post. You know you truly love someone when their loss cause you so much sorrow, and yet, they still continue to give you strength and love.

    Best wishes and good thoughts to you and your family...

  5. Jonas: The bitterness is mostly gone, although the court case against the driver of the SUV is still ongoing. I actually wish she had died too, to pay the price for what she did to my sister in her sheer stupidity.

    Eros: My sister has far-reaching effects on many people - in fact, all those whose lives she touched can still feel her. She was an amazing woman and I am utterly proud to call her sister and friend.

    Thank you for your thoughts and wishes.

  6. Ah so sad Pam, just so needless and so sad.

    What a beautiful tribute to her though, it's like she will never be far away, out of thoughts. And always living on through the kids too.

    My deepest, heartfelt condolences.


  7. Thank you, Pam. She was, and always will be, close to my heart.

  8. You've written wonderful things about her...she must have been a very special woman. She will live on forever because you loved her. It's not enough, I know...

  9. Laurie, she was a most fabulous woman, sister, friend, teacher....

    Words will never be enough, but I have so many wonderful memories of her, with her, that it carries me through and warms my heart, even in times like this when I am missing her so much.

    Thank you for stopping by. How are you doing after your surgery? All is well, I hope.


thoughts floated through the ether...