In March of 2014, my heart began it’s journey to heartbreak. My sister was diagnosed with cancer. She sat there. Stunned. All the color drained from her face. And the first place she looked, after the doctor spoke those words, was my tear streaked face. Panic. Anger. Not my sister. She’s just a baby. She’s pregnant. She has her own babies. Please no. Anything but this. Why? But when she looked at me, I had to pack that all away. She needed me. She needed my strength, my love…She just needed me.
The doctor told us to take our time and left the room. Her boyfriend was off to the side in his own world of dismay. I held her. I held her so so tight. We cried so hard together. I just didn’t want to let her go. I didn’t want this to be true. I didn’t want it to be my sister. Old ladies die. Not my baby sister. Then, she stopped. She let me go, sat up straight, looked me in the face and said “No.” I wiped my face, filled with confusion I looked at her. She told me “Promise me. Promise me you will be strong for me. Promise you will keep your game face on. Promise me you will love me through this.”
I wiped my face. Stood up. Kissed her head. Walked out of the room to get the doctor back in there to find out what we needed to do next.
I held strong after that. She wasn’t selfish. It was just who she needed me to be for her to fight the hardest she could. I’m ok with that. Our relationship has always been different from the stereotypical “sister” relationship. I didn’t birth her, but I always loved her as if I had.