Yesterday, I received a beautiful letter from one of my sister-in-laws. It was the kind of letter that makes you weepy(and I am NOT a weepy person.) It got me to thinking about my sister-in-laws and just how wonderful these women really are. My parents originally had 8 boys and me. I was right in the middle but, two of my older brothers passed so, now I have 2 over and 4 under me.
Being raised in a testosterone filled home was wonderful. I never wanted a sister because I enjoyed having my brothers all to myself. I remember when my oldest brother became serious with his now wife, man, was I jealous. She was taking my brother away from me..humph. All of my brothers are grown now and it was a learning process for me when “other women” began to enter the testosterone- laden domain that I was so accustomed to being the “Queen of the Hill” in(my parents nickname for me.) My SILs are the best and I still get so overwhelmed at the love they have shown me, not because they love my brothers but, because, they love me.
After Katrina, my brother and his wonderful wife, took my kids so that I could come home and rebuild. They went to school functions, meetings, recitals and everything else people would do for their own kids (shoot, some people don’t do it for their own let alone a nephew and niece.) It takes a special kind of woman to say,” let your sister bring the kids here and we’ll keep them so she can work on the house and stuff.” I always tease them and say my kids are more theirs than mine…lol My kids love the ground they walk on, especially when the ground has snow on it!
My other sister-in-law helped me get through nursing school. When I started, my kids were 2 years and 9 mos old and studying with two babies around was not easy. She would come pick the kids up for me and keep them so I could study, as often as I needed for as long as I needed. Because of her help and support, I was able to get through school and finish at the top of my class.
Another sister-in-law was my rock at one of the worst times of my life, when my mom passed. We had all gone to the funeral home to see how they had my mother laid out the day before the funeral. She looked lovely except, she had on this beautiful pink suit and they had some “hot-ghetto red” fingernail polish on her. I told the director that the polish has to go, it wasn’t a color my mom would ever wear in life, she wasn’t going to her final resting place with it on. The director went to the back and came back with 4 other colors; hot-ghetto fuscia, hot-ghetto mauve, hot-ghetto dark red and hot-ghetto something else. I wasn’t having it. My dad and my brothers were preparing to leave the funeral home while my sister-in-law and I got into my car, ran to the drugstore and found a beautiful shade of pink polish. I purchased the polish, some remover and cotton balls. We returned to the funeral home and I moved to one side of my mother as she laid in her casket and my sister-in-law moved to the other (women really are Steel Magnolias you know) and together we took off the “hot ghetto” polish and put the beautiful shade of pink on.
These bright, beautiful, selfless women came into my life because of my brothers and for that, I am thankful. But, no matter what happens between them, they will always be a part of my life, a part of my soul. They have etched a special place in my heart that will last….a lifetime.