Written for a Christmas Contest
|It was just like, the good old days.
“I swear you should have been a comedian,” I said, to my sister. She sat about one fourth of the way from the foot of her full sized bed, rolling her shoulder length hair. I sat on the floor at the foot, facing her.
We laughed so hard, I had knots in my stomach, cramps in my cheeks and, tears streaming down my face; while she grabbed her mid-drift with one hand, arched her back, and held a lock of sandy blonde hair, straight up in the air, in her other hand. Her scarlet face reminded me of a muppet, which made me laugh all the more.
“Wait a minute,” I said, got up, grabbed the hand mirror and stuck it in front of her face. This is what I’m looking at.
She gasped for air. “Stop, I can’t take it anymore. I’ve got to get my hair done.”
“I don’t know why I offered to have Christmas here this year, I’m not even unpacked.”
I wondered the same thing. Don’t worry; I’ll help you. This is a great house in a great neighborhood. How did you find it?”
“Mike grew up in this neighborhood, before his parents moved to where they are now and he always wanted to come back. It was love at first sight when he showed it to me. I miss him.” She said
“He just went to work. You newlyweds are too mushy for me at times!”
“Don’t be jealous,” she sang out.
Trust me; I’m not.” I sang back.
“What are you going to do about decorations? Christmas is only two weeks away.”
“I have them. Their in that extra room, in the back of the house.”
“There’s another room back there?”
“Yeah, on the other side of the kitchen.”
“Where are you going to put all of the children?”
“Oh, there’ll be plenty of room; I thought I’d set their table up, out in the backyard; not to fret, I made hot chocolate” she said, tilting her head toward the back door.
We started laughing all over again. “Remember when we were younger and mom had to give up her sewing room, to separate us, because you clowned around so much?” I asked her.
“Yeah, that sucked.”
“When dad finished the basement and made her a new room downstairs, I tried to convince her to trade rooms with me, but she wouldn’t here of it.”
“Did you? She laughed, so did I; she wouldn’t trade with me either.”
“You remember that Opal, you had,” I asked.
“The ring, or the car?”
“The poor car that you killed.”
“Steve Mc Roy killed that car.”
“Blame in on Steve,” I said, rolling my eyes. “Did you really knock over a gas pump?”
“This is the honest to goodness truth,” she said, shifting on the bed, “That car – rest its soul.”
“You got that right,” I interrupted.
She glared at me for a split second. “I loved that car; that was my first car. Dad got it out of the showcase. By the time you moved back to town, it had gone through a few physical changes.”
“I’ll say; Dad kept referring to your red car. I don’t remember a red car, I saw a faded orange mess, riddled with softball sized bites taken out of its body.”
“Let me tell you what happened.”
“Go on,” I said nodding my head toward her.
“Like I was saying, that car was on its last leg at the time. I stopped for gas at that little station on Michigan Avenue. After I paid, I got in and started to take off. Steve was pulling in from the road, to use the pump. My car cut off, he rammed me in the back, slamming me into the pump; and yeah it hung half way to the ground. I hit my head on the windshield and got whiplash out of it. If it hadn’t been for that pump I would have gotten pushed out into the traffic. So in a strange sort of way, that pump may have saved my life.”
“How much did that cost you?”
“I don’t know, Dad had the insurance in his name. He had them take care of it.”
I dropped my head, shaking it back and forth. “And the poor thing never ran again.”
She laughed and threw a small decorative pillow that landed on the top of my head.
I looked up at her; she looked pale. I didn’t think much of it; she has been doing that for the pass couple of years. I figured her sugar was out of balance again, sometimes her color came back on its own, other times it was time for her insulin injection or she would eat a piece of candy and feel better. But she still appeared to be alert and was still laughing, so she felt all right. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. Her color didn’t stop fading. I could see the picture on the wall behind her, straight through her.
I yelled, “NO! Don’t GO!”
I woke up and remembered, laying her to rest two years ago, she now resides, in lot 127 at Oak Hill Cemetery.
Author’s notes: my sister was in the hospital, with an ulcer on the ball of her foot, (complications of diabetes.) Staph infection set in and the doctors attempted, three times to cut the infection out. The day she was scheduled to have her foot amputated; she died.
I accepted the fact that she would have one foot for the rest of her life; that she would need help with her two daughters and daily activities, while her husband was working. But never did I contemplate it would result in her death, at the age of twenty-eight years old.
This is one of the very few vividly colored, sequential dreams, I remember having in my lifetime; it seemed so real. Afterwards I felt a sense of closure that I struggled with for two years. It has been sixteen years since that dream and I still meditate on it (off and on). She was my only sibling. I miss her so much.