My younger sister is on Spring break and my mum had work. After I prepared her breakfast (buttermilk biscuits from scratch), I needed to take a nap. When I awoke, we somehow had a heart to heart. My younger sister is 15 years old-and a freshman in H.S. She came into this world, literally fighting for her life. Born several months premature and weighing just over a lb, her entry into this world was filled with complications. Even today, she must go to the hospital at the first sign of a cold.
The first time I saw her, she was ten months old and weighed 8 lbs. My mum had just returned from another state to retrieve her. One day, she received a panicked call from her niece, if she didnt have someone for *D to be released, from the hospital to, she would go into the child welfare system. My mum was the only person she trusted. Within a few days, my mum was off and when she returned, she had a tiny bundle in her arms. My younger sister had SO many problems: failure to thrive, she was fed through an inserted G-tube (in her stomach) and within a few days, she would be on oxygen. Her care was strenuous. Eventually she required Physical, Speech and Occupational Therapy for her to advance.
My mum wondered what she had gotten herself into. She was already caring for three children (my elder sister was away in college) with two jobs, a mortgage and now a very sick infant. As I am told, the first few months were difficult. Within a week of arrival, *D was hospitalized with Pneumonia (she has had this more than 20 times). My mum worked so much and did not have the time to care for a special needs baby. *D was mostly confined to home. A nurse came several days a week and it was difficult. Everyone did as much as possible to make sure she stayed with us but that was not enough. As my mum tells us, she was faced with the decision of *D going into foster care. I was a teenager at the time but said to my mum, “I will take care of her.” Thus began a life changing few years, of dedicating my life to this tiny baby. She was my life. I learned to feed her via her g-tube, hook up to the feeding pump at night, adjust her oxygen accordingly etc. She was basically my child. I was home with her everyday, all day for several years. When she began to speak, she called me Mommy. To this day, my younger sister calls me mommy. We have a bond that is amazing. She has had to remind me of a few things through stories and photos, but the love I have for her, no brain injury can erase. Its amazing, the things I’ve forgotten but the sentiments that have remained. When seeing her for the first time after I was released from the hospital she said, “Don’t worry mommy, you’ll get better”
As we spoke today, *D began to address the concerns she has with her birth family, “I don’t feel comfortable calling the person who had me mom. I know she is my mom but I don’t know her and I don’t want her to feel bad. You are my mommy and mum is my mum” I informed her that she was the child and does not hold the burden of making others feel comfortable. Its about her comfort. *D sees her (our extended) family once a year. They live in another state, my mum and her take a road trip. She speaks to them via phone as well. She has several older siblings, as she was the youngest. She is also the youngest in our family as well. To her, its all a bit confusing-in regards to sorting out the titles. *D knows who her birth family is and who her family is. She is just at a point, that she does not want to offend anyone, or make them uncomfortable. As I told her today, “You enjoy life and say whats makes you feel comfortable. I’ll worry about the rest” *D will be over again tomorrow. I am looking forward to seeing her. I’ve never referred to her as anything other than my younger sister, and I never will. *D is a part of our family, just as much as I am, nothing will ever change that.
Weird fact: *D’s birth mother is my mum’s first niece. D calls her birth grandmother Auntie and my mum, Mum.
In other news: Its Beginning to Look A lot Like Christmas-in April ^ ^
Do you see what I see? Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!
am I the only one excited about the snow? How is the weather in your part of time? I am in Chicago