11 Years and It Still Hurts


My brothers may kill me for this photo, but I had to put it up. Just so you know, in order from left to right are me, my sister Jessica, my brother Gabriel, and my brother Daniel.

Today marks 11 years since my sister died. For some reason I’m so torn up this year that I’m kind of scaring myself.

She would be turning 30 this year, come June.

We were supposed to celebrate in a HUGE way.

Now, all I have left to remember her is her memory, and at this moment, for me, that’s not enough.

Facebook doesn’t help much either, because I keep seeing those photos that say some variation of “Like if you have the best sister in the world,” and I would click, except my sister would never see it. She never knew about Facebook anyway. It wasn’t open to other folk outside of Harvard anyway.

I think about all of the things that I enjoy now, that she never knew about. A certain Mr. Bruno Mars. The Matrix movies, and any of the Iron Man/Avengers stuff. It sounds so silly doesn’t it? To be waxing poetic about singers and movies that my sister wasn’t alive to see or hear.
She would have had the same reaction to Whitney Houston’s death as I did. Mostly because we spent HOURS singing songs from The Preacher’s Wife soundtrack and from The Bodyguard.

I keep thinking about how only the cellist got to be with her for any significant amount of time. She has five other nieces and nephews to hug and kiss and spoil. She might have gotten married and given us some people to spoil as well. My children don’t have a maternal aunt. I can’t get over that. My brother’s kids both have an aunt and uncle, but not mine.

I feel cheated. Mostly because everyone else in my family has someone to pair up with. My mom and dad have each other, my brothers have each other, and then there’s me. Left to be weird and try to fill the time that I would initially be on the phone with my little sister with other things. No taking impromptu road trips with my sister. No telling secrets to someone who is bound to me by blood, and the kind of love that doesn’t care how many fights you’ve had, or if you had a big fight. I would have someone to call in the middle of the night and they would answer the phone.

I have friends and cousins who say that they would do this, but let’s be real, the only person who would have said this AND not hated me for calling at two in the morning to talk about my irrational fear of going to the circus with my children the next day because of the clowns is my sister.

There are lots of things that I did in reaction to the death of Jessica.

I joined the navy.

I started talking to Mr. Houseful civilly again. ( we were 21 years old – stop holding your breath)

I started doing things the way that I wanted to do them, when I wanted to do them, because I figured death is final.

Now, I’m here. Blogging away and loving it overall. I have four children, a fantastic husband, and a great life. We aren’t poor, we don’t go hungry, and we get to do awesome things.


The hole that is still in my heart never gets smaller. I find myself trying to hear her voice the way that I remember it in the car the night before she died. We were talking about her boyfriend and how she was going to miss him when she went to boot camp. She also asked me if I thought that I was going to marry Mr. Houseful. The cellist was happily cooing away in his car seat, and life was good.

I feel like I did the day that she died. Mad. Hurt. Confused. Lost. I haven’t attended church at all this month, and I’m not sure that I want to go back any time soon.

I realize that this post is literally a brain vomit, but I felt the need to get this out, otherwise…well.

So, if you all have time today, just say a small prayer for me, please? I’d appreciate it.