Sunday, March 2, 2014

When She Sleeps

Some of you know that I have started working on a new collection, a continuation of sorts of my thesis.  I arbitrarily set a goal of ten essays about ten different subjects making up a collection that I could theoretically submit as a whole to be published, or each piece individually to journals and what not.

One of the essays, one of the subjects that I randomly made up as part of a writing prompt, is based upon my sister.

Here is short bit that I am lucky enough to have experienced first-hand while visiting her here now, in her new city, in her new life, in the wintry and chilly hills of Pennsylvania:

"When my sister sleeps, she becomes eight-years-old again.  Her face becomes flushed, her breathing slow and deliberate.  I noticed tonight, as we watched show after show on Apple TV, that just before dozing off completely, before succumbing to the pull of exhaustion that inevitably hits her each time we watch movies late into the night, that she, like a ritual, removed each of the many pieces of jewelry from her ears, fingers, wrists and neck.  And because of this, she looked much younger than she is today, she looked like the sister that I knew when we were both small, the sister that slept above me in our bunk bed, the sister that slept in the pillow forts that we made in the living room, the sister that slept on the pull-out couch in our great-grandmother's home as I watched Peter and the Dragon, the sister that I have known her whole life.  She sleeps the same as she always has.

We are blood.  And no matter the distance, no matter the new people in our lives, or the old ones that have taken so much that we sometimes feel like shells of the people that we once were, we will always have each other.  Writing this I cry quiet tears (so that I do not wake her) welling up with the love and hope and excitement for what is in store for this sleeping babe.  I only want happiness for her.  I know she only wants happiness for me.  We are the lucky ones."

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