The post I never wanted to write . . .

I haven't written in a few months because I've been quite busy putting one foot in front of the other.
And I've been scared, terrified really, that I will completely botch this, the blog post I hoped and prayed that I never would have to write.
I don't know how to honor my sister, who passed away 4 months ago today.
Every night {and most days} the thoughts flood my mind and I know I must write yet I know whatever my feeble fingers type will not be enough.  That they will not even begin to explain this beautiful soul.  I know I am failing her with every typed word, but knowing her, she's already forgiven me.
It would be impossible to explain her indomitable spirit, her courage, patience, her sense of humor in the midst of the worst of times - her one liners, imperfectly yet perfectly timed.  Her effortless way of being a good person - because when you aren't trying to impress anyone, or be anything but your true self, you just are so authentic it hurts.  So real, it seems it can't be real.  But man, was she real.
Her surgery in January filled all of our beings with so much hope, we could barely stand it.  Know this about Genine - she was the last to give up hope.  She would have suffered 10 more years in a  hospital bed if it meant one more day watching her son play baseball.
It's also a fine line on what my family needs to hold close and private and not share with the world about that time, that day, and what I feel my people should know.  Especially those who sent cards, flowers, showed up at her memorial, generously donated to her GoFundMe, gave hugs at the right time, and didn't give hugs at the wrong time, those who have learned to tread lightly while desperately trying to carry the burden. I write this as a thank you to all of you.
For the doctors and nurses, who got 'too close' because it was impossible not to.
For our family friend and reverend, Alan, who memorialized her so intimately on April 30th, her presence was palpable at that lighthouse, a beacon, a sign she was off to someplace better without pain.
And to Priscilla, who sang "Leaving on a Jet Plane" for one more verse, the verse that let us weep & mourn the way we needed to do at that moment.
For her best friend, who brought snacks, lots of snacks, to the hospital, and held all of our hands when we needed it, especially Genine's.
And for my best friend who has taught me to 'feel the feelings'  and has felt them with me and also for me, when I just can't.
For Vic and his daughters, for being there when they could.
I write for Horseface, who doesn't know how to make it better but tries.
My aunts & uncles and extended family who visited the hospital on Christmas Eve dressed as Santa and flew from Alaska to say goodbye, and so many gestures inbetween.
For my brother, who is stuck with the bratty little sister, and is missing his partner in crime every day.
For my daughters, who didn't get to spend enough time with their auntie Genine.  I don't know how I will ever make that up to them.
For my brother in law, who proved his love for Genine in her last 4 months of life, in a way no man should ever have to.
I write it for my nephew, a son who has never been more loved by a mother on this earth, who is celebrating his first birthday without one today.
For my dad, a man of few words, who lost a daughter and friend.
My mom, oh, my mom. No words for this selfless hero.  None.
And I write for those of you who are grieving your own losses.  What tricky business, huh? I remember hearing a story about a friend of a friend who had tragically lost her sister, she explained that it just 'took her breath away' when she least expected it.  I know all too well how that feels now.  It's just breathtakingly sad. Keep breathing.
So many people reached out with Genine's passing, sharing their stories and feelings about how she made all of their lives better in one way or another.
One of my favorite descriptions, is simple, but accurate.  She was 'uncommonly kind and made a wicked guacamole'.  She was just that, uncommonly kind.  A kindness, that I'm quite sure, unless you knew her, you will never have the privilege of experiencing.  A kindness so pure it comes along once in a lifetime. I'm so grateful it came along in mine.




8 comments

  1. She's not forgiving you - you don't need it - she's proud of you and she's honored, your words... you did good. xo

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  2. No words- I feel this in my heart! So amazingly written and my prayers will always be there for all of you!

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  3. I'm so so sorry for your loss.

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  4. this is so beautiful sarah... love you and I know I would have loved genine too. xo MN

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  5. So beautifully stated! This post made me cry. My family has suffered from two huge losses in the past three years. It is really rough. Your sister sounds like one tough cookie with a tremendous spirit. I feel for you. xx

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  6. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful...thanks Sarah.

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  7. A beautiful tribute. I unfortunately know all too well the feelings you eloquently described. Wishing you peace, light and above all else, endless love and memories to share to keep her alive in your hearts - and those that should have had more time to know her - forever.

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  8. dear Sarah, What a beautiful way to honor your sister and all the family & friends who were with you all. I am so sorry for your loss, a terrible loss of an uncommonly kind soul.

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