Dear Sister, I Miss You
Did you get the message yet of this letter? I miss you.
It’s now been two years since you passed away. It’s been two years since I held your hand and you took your last breath. It’s been two years since I’ve been on my knees to pray for your fast passing with no pain or suffering. It didn’t really dawn at me that you were slipping out of this earthly realm and moving on to the next to be with our Heavenly Father. I was numb. When I received the call that you had Ovarian Cancer, I honestly didn’t know what to think. The only thing I knew was that I had to quickly pack, tell work I had to leave (which they had no qualms about it, I just wanted to let you know) and then take Stephen with to drive down to Georgia to be by your side through whatever options were available for treatment. We just didn’t realize that we had such little time left together.
No one knew how sick you really were. You were never one to complain about anything. You were so classy and empathetic that way. You always hated the thought of ever being a burden on someone, and you definitely didn’t want to be a burden on Mom or Grandma…or anyone. You were always worried about taking care of everyone else and enjoyed your time in babysitting your nieces and nephews. Children were the joy of your life, and it pains my heart that you never got to experience motherhood. I want you to know that you WERE a mother to so many children, though not biologically your own. You made every single child that you came in contact with feel special, loved and important. That was one of your many amazing qualities that you had. You had this gift of sharing unconditional love with people…even complete strangers.
Do you remember how we met? I was a bag boy at Hill’s Shopping Center, and I was wearing my green apron that the bag boys wore. Then you Momma, Granny and you came stomping up to the register…beaming from ear to ear. Granny started talking to me and had invited me over for dinner. I remember that dinner really well. Granny cooked her signature cubed steak, mashed potatoes, her amazing biscuits and pole beans. We both didn’t realize that she was trying to play matchmaker with us, at the time…she also didn’t know I was gay. But because of Granny, we became something more than what we thought we were going to be. We became family. You became my sister. You became my inspiration of what innocent and loved filled heart should be. Then I met the whole Eason clan one day in a hallway while I was balling my eyes out. You and Stacey immediately came up to me (Gigi came following after y’all) while I was sitting on the floor in the school hallway, and asked, “Why are you crying honey?” I told you my story while shedding a few more tears. The next day, the three of you told me that “Momma and Daddy said to have your stuff packed. You coming home.” That word home played tricks on my mind for a while. The next day, my stuff was packed…and our family was almost complete (until Phillip joined in later). It was very easy to see where you got your heart from…Momma and Daddy. All three of my new sisters posses this quality of the heart…and of love…and of family. We had nothing, but we had everything. We had something that no one else had….family. You three gave up a bedroom, so I could have one.
I remember sitting on the couch while you, Gigi and Stacey-cakes (yes, I called her out with that name) would sit on the floor while I brushed your hair. I remember making you so mad (not that you actually got mad) at me from playing a Halloween prank of putting a screaming door mat in the bathroom under the towels on the floor. I remember you yelling…and you just knew it was me, though I might have given myself away from hyena like laughter coming from my bedroom. Thank you for not throwing anything at me. God gave you the patience of Job.
I have something to confess to you. I haven’t been on my knees praying since you passed. I know that it’s something that everyone knew I took pride in. Me dropping to my knees in prayer. I just can’t bring myself to it yet. I’m afraid that I will cry and bawl my eyes out in reliving that night with you in the hospital room. Don’t be mad, but me and Gigi have been arguing a lot lately. Don’t worry though, we will never stop loving each other and we are healing as fast that both of us know how to do (We are Easons…and we are pig headed. You can thank Daddy for that trait!). Gigi and Stacey go back and forth, but they love each other so much. I just don’t want you worry too much while you’re watching over us. I know that you are around us still. I feel your love once in a while. You know…that little chill in my spine. Just enough to let me know that you are here.
You are so missed by so many people. You have touched so many lives. The day of your funeral was hard. I want you to know that it was a day of weirdness. We was a day of reuniting with friends and loved ones. Everyone that was there loved you…well, love you. Your presence on this earth was felt by all. They recognized your kind and innocent soul. They recognized your love for people, regardless of skin color or financial level of success.
I miss our long walks and chats on our dirt road at night. How we would chat about what we would do with our future, and what we would do for our family and friends if we won the lottery. They were so grandiose. We would buy houses, pay off the land to all live there, go on vacations to the Bahamas and take cruises across the globe. The good Lord knew you weren’t getting on a plane anytime soon.
Don’t get mad at me for sharing this picture. I love this picture. It greatly shows off who you are, and how you NEVER WOULD KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS! We would always laugh at that. I tried hard to take pictures before you thought I would, but that never worked. You would still blink. I guess that runs in the family, too. Granny and Momma would blink their eyes also. Then add into the fact that you’ve always had same curly hair that we would always try to straighten with a hair dryer. Oh wait…I think you did throw a hairbrush at me once, but I can’t remember why. I’ll have to ask Stacey, God knows that woman never forgets a thing. Though, I’ll just blame it all on Gigi. That woman had too many hairbrushes lying around, I still remember her pink and blue makeup and “hair accessory” caddy. She was so proud to buy that ugly thing, but she just knew that she was “all that and a bag of chips” carrying that huge thing around.
I’m thankful that you are no longer sick and that you are not in any pain. I knew that you are in Heaven looking down, and I hope that you are just proud of us. There’s not a day that goes by that no one thinks about your or misses you. Time does heal all wounds, but time doesn’t take away the emptiness or the imprint that you etched onto the souls of all that you came in contact with. Please tell Nana HI and that I miss and love her, too. I know that she’s taking wonderful care of you. I can just imagine the both you trading recipes in Heaven. Baking was one of your most favorite things to do. You put all the best chefs to shame, but it’s because you watched Top Chef and all of those other cooking shows that helped inspire you to try out something new upon your guinea pigs. We were only happy but to oblige.
I’m being very mushy right now, I know…but I’m not crying. At least, not at the moment. My heart has just been sighing all day, and I’ve been thinking of you. I’m gonna blame it on Daddy though. We know the date you passed away, but Daddy is insistent to honor your day on the 3rd Thursday of October. I guess that makes sense then it does to go by a date. I still can’t believe that it’s been two years. The days have gone by so fast.
I will talk to you again soon my sister. Everyone misses their Aunt Tay-Tay. Everyone misses their Sister Tina. Everyone misses their daughter Tina. Everyone misses you. I want to call you now to gab about nothing and everything. I want to call and ask for your advice about what to bake, and how to mend things better with Gigi, and well…just a lot. You were the glue that kept the family sane…and your glue is greatly needed. Everyone asks, “What would Tina do or say.” We try to replicate your sayings and thought patterns, but it just doesn’t come out right. We try live your legacy, but we fail at it miserably.
One day I will see you. I promise. I don’t know when, but one day when God wants us to reunite. I can write on and on, but I’m not sure if the whole world wants to keep reading. Though, I want the world to know what a special Woman you were and want to convey what a special love you had for the world.
You are loved. You are special. You are greatly missed.
Love Always, Your Brother.