My Sister Cathy
Cathy Marie (Barrett) Devore; my little Sister! Fifty years ago today, May 21st, you were born into this world; one year and ten days after me.
As years go by and we move on with our lives, it’s easy to forget the bond that we shared growing up. More than a half century has passed now, but I still remember our childhood…and it will forever be engrained in my heart.
So much alike were we that I became accustomed to people asking if we were twins. We grew up side by side; taking our first steps, speaking our first words. You were my first best friend; you were the first girl that I ever loved; we shared bedrooms growing up; bunk beds, guest beds, couches, and pallets at grandparents and families houses. We laughed together, we cried together, we hugged each other when we were afraid, we held hands as we walked to the bus stop together, and we stared into each other’s eyes with eager anticipation on Christmas Eve as we waited for Santa to arrive. We shared each other’s most intimate secrets and fears. We argued and fought like siblings do, but god help anyone who messed with my little sister on the school ground and god help even more so the poor boy who picked a fight with me, because whenever they did, you could hear Cathy coming like a freight train.
Yes, we grew up and went on with our lives; we each married, had children; grandchildren, and the years and added family drew us farther apart. I moved across the country and the relationship grew even dimmer. But still, through hardships and distance, every time I would come home you would make your way to Moms house, and as my daughter, Beth, put it, you always knew when Cathy arrived because the door would burst open and she would yell, “Where’s my Brother?”
And so, I wanted to remember you today and say, “Happy Birthday Sis!” Last year there was a surprise party thrown for my fiftieth…and it breaks my heart that you will not be able to share the same experience.
My soul is torn today, because my little sister should be celebrating her birthday, but on October 31st, she was taken away. I feel pain and I feel guilt. I know there is nothing I could have done, but I am her big brother…her protector…and when I watched them take her off of life support, I felt helpless!
People have offered their sympathies and said nice things and I know they will continue to do so. Yes, I understand all the thoughts about her spirit being with me, and seeing her again one day, and her being in a better place, but that doesn’t make me feel any better at the moment. I guess that is why I wrote this; I just wanted to vent, to express, to mourn in my own way, and remember her the way she would want me to remember her. Yes, I am angry, I am very fucking angry! And Cathy, I know you would smile when I speak this way.
It is my sister’s birthday today. I love her, and I miss her. My heart has been literally broken, and been repaired with metal implants. But now it is broken again.
The Tin Man finally got his heart, but when he lost Dorothy he said, “Now I know I have a heart, because it is breaking.”