I recently reread a note that my brother-in-law sent to me, regarding my late sister, his wife.
My sister passed away a couple of short years ago. I have written about my beloved sister before. I have this note pinned to my bulletin board in our mudroom, where we pass through every day several times.
Attached to the note he wrote were notes that my sister had written about my children and my twin brother’s children.
Behind each of our children’s names, she had notes about what they had accomplished, such as honor roll, band concert, birthday approaching, spelling bee final contestant, drawing of a snowman in the paper, and more.
When she would read something in the paper regarding our children, or attend a program or concert of theirs, she would document these individual accomplishments. These jottings would, in turn, become part of letters she would send to each child.
I would consider my sister an introvert, although not with her family. She liked to be at home, and was not a socialite.
She loved to read, listen to music, work with numbers (she was an accountant), and think of creative “doings” for her loved ones.
She loved spending time with her family. We were all her love. We were so lucky for that.
Other people who did not know her well would never be aware of the selfless, loving, caring, and giving person she was. She was extremely humble. Her family was the recipient of her big heart. She was also very intelligent, and was on top of political and social issues, which was also a gift she gave us.
My brother-in-law, whom we love dearly, shared in his note to me that while he was using a notepad, he found my sister’s jottings at the end of the pad. Feelings and emotions flow.
When my sister passed away, I received a gift of money from my coworkers to be used for something to buy in memory of her. Gardens. Flowers. My sister would always gift our mother, when she was living, and I with large geranium plants for our gardens.
I decided to add an area in my flower bed that would remind us of my sister. With the money that was given in memory of my sister, I planted red geraniums and a beautiful, bountiful perennial geranium.
Among those plants is a large stone imprinted with the words, “When a loved one becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.” One of my sister’s high school batons (she was the majorette) is leaning on that stone.
The sentiment inscribed on that stone holds so very true. I think about her so often. When one of my children has accomplished something or may be sad about something, I often think of how I would have shared this with her, and she would have really listened and cared. I still may get tearful, but I treasure the memories and what she meant to me. And I smile.
Each time my sister and I would depart from a visit with each other, we would hug and kiss each other. A sister’s love. The memories are treasures.
As this holiday season is soon upon us, may we all remember this. Time spent with family and friends creates memories, and these memories are treasures to keep and hold dear.
At this Thanksgiving time, may we really be gracious and grateful for others in our lives and what they mean to us.