Monday, February 20, 2012

A sister is a forever friend

Dear Harper,

I am compelled to tell you about your sisters. You only had one when you were born but now you have two beautiful sisters in your life, or what would have been your life. 

Your sister, Brianna, was so very excited that mommy was going to have a baby "lizard". She was only 4 when I found out I was pregnant with you and was going to turn 5 just a couple of months before your were to be born. As little as she was, and not understanding things when "it" happened, she is is a very intuitive little girl. She remembers now being only 5 months away from 7 years old. She holds me when I need to be held and she snaps me out of it when I am in a daze dreaming of holding you again. She is beautiful in every way, even when she is at her worst. She has this cute little nose, and you had it too. You looked a lot like her when you were born. Her almost almond eyes that are as big as moons, you were even going to have her little gap in your teeth (which you get from your momma), I saw the ridge in your gums. You had her long "piano player" fingers and I am not exactly how you all got long fingers because mine are short and stubby. You were beautiful just like Brianna...just breathtaking.

Your sister was so cute when you were in utero, she wanted to share her room with you, her bed with you and was even willing to maybe share a few of her stuffed animals with you. In her eyes, you were being born to be her best friend because at 4 she didn't have one yet. She helped me pick out clothes for you and we would buy them and hang them in "you all's cwoset" as she would say. 

There are days I look back now and think that I might have known your tiny feet would never grace this Earth. I had an urgency about EVERYTHING. We told our friends right away, we even gave your grandpa the test for his birthday just a mere 24 hours after I took it. We wanted everyone to know about you as soon as possible. Your grandma said she would buy the crib for us and I had it picked and waiting for her. It arrived and rested under your sister's bed until we found out if you were a boy or girl. I bought clothing for you because I just didn't want you to be naked, we bought diapers and wipes, and burp clothes. Everything we would need for you. There was hardly anything to register for which I didn't want to do...odd, I wanted to do it with your brother and sister. In all of my preparing I wanted to find a "big sister" shirt for Brianna. I would always find darling ones and I never could bring myself to buy it. 

It was almost as if there was a tiny hand holding me back saying "wait" because I knew if I bought it that she would want to wear it and it would make me have to explain that while she was a big sister that she wasn't really. I wanted you to myself, I didn't want to share you day in and day out. I wanted all of you to stay right with me. I was afraid I would lose pieces of you. These were all feelings that I had before I learned that you grew your wings early.  A sense of urgency to let the world know you existed but an extreme need to keep you to myself. These are the feelings I recognize as knowing you weren't staying. 

Then just a short 7 weeks after your death, there's that word again...death, I found out that that we were having another baby. I panicked, it was ugly because it lasted so long. At 16 weeks we found out that we were having another girl and I was excited because Brianna was going to be a sister and I was going to get to tell her all about her big sister in heaven. I panicked the whole pregnancy, even rented a heart doppler so I could check on her any time I wanted or needed to because I was fearful. It was a long pregnancy and I was so thankful when she was born. I knew you were there looking over her. 

She knows about you, I tell her all the time. She is beautiful & perfect and always happy! She has worn everything that I bought for you and every time I put something on her I get teary eyed and tell her it was her big sister Harper's. I think you gave her a touch of your personality, or what I think you would be like. She is only 8 months old now but she is going to know who you are because I'm going to make sure to tell her.

Sisters are forever friends, Harper. I have no blood sisters unlike you but I have a couple friends who are my sisters without being blood related. They are always there to catch me when I fall, to hug me when I cry, to knock me out of my funk when I am down. I can always count on them for a laugh, and to catch my tears when they fall. They are my sisters, my forever friends. Your brother and sisters call them "auntie" because they are my sisters.

 I could not have survived without them...I would have dried up and become nothing without their help, their friendship, their sisterhood. Not even your Super Daddy could have fixed the aches, pains and broken things they did. Your daddy pieced back parts of my heart only he could, but my sisters pieced back the rest that only that kind of love and friendship can. Your Auntie Lee raced back to hold me when she was in Flordia. She held my hand and was my rock when I needed her, she caught hundreds of thousands of tears and cried with me when I mourned you. Your Auntie Karen reached out with her ever loving arms and embraced me in a way only she can do. (Thanks for urging her to come back to Kentucky...I really do appreciate that!) And your Auntie Holly, she held my hand, she cried for me but never with me because she was placed here to be my stone of strength. These are women that I am not sure how I could survive without everyday because they know me, they understand me and they still love me even with all of my faults.

I often find it hard to remember my life before having kids, and like that, I find it hard to remember my life before my sisters came into it. They have just always been there, just like your brother and sisters. Always there for me, walking the rough roads and the easy right beside me. I love them, and it's a bond like no other.
These are my forever friends, my sisters. They love you, Harper, in only a way they can. They miss you as much as I do, and even cry for you just like Mommy does. Sisterhood goes beyond death into eternity and these are things I need you to know. That when your sisters cross over to meet you, you will have a bond like no other with them. This is one of the greatest blessings I could have ever given you. You gave me the blessing of having another daughter and bringing me even close to the women that God brought me as sisters.  

I love you Harper, to the moon and back. 


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