Wednesday, August 5, 2015

My Bevie

Her life was full of adventure and short on hesitation. She barreled through events and decisions with a speed that seemed impetuous to outsiders. In reality, she cared. She cared deeply. She was the most loyal of all of us, the most often hurt, and the first one to forgive the offender.

She was married five times to four men, having found her true soulmate the second time around and finding him again the fifth. They would spend the best part of their lives together. Doing the things they enjoyed - bicycling, riding motorcycles, existing in the middle of nowhere with nobody bothering them. She loved photography and snapped some of the best shots of my babies as they grew up.

In our youth, she was the focus of my first memory in life at the age of 2, when she who was 8 at the time was struck by a car while riding her bicycle. The woman said she was distracted by the cute blonde girl in ponytails (me) and hadn't seen my sister. At 2, my first memory is of my sister lying on the couch and a toddler's understanding that I had killed my sister. 

When I was about 4 or 5, we had been to rummage sales with my mother and I had seen a pair of shiny, black boots I just had to have. My mom wouldn't buy them for me. They barely fit and she knew I would grow out of them too soon to warrant bringing home. Later that day, my sister became a part of my first memory of being so happy I cried when she came home from being out riding her bike, or so I thought, with a pair of shiny, black boots she had bought with the only money she had. My mom was right - I wore those boots once or twice. They were tight and sweaty, but I kept my "gogo boots" for a long time and my sister was forever my angel.

So many memories of the kind of person my sister was. Which makes it even harder to lose her to cirrhosis at the age of 56.

You see, choices made can either build us up, break us down, or give us a new strength. For her, there were a combination of choices she made, a chance accident, and a habit of keeping personal issues to herself that gave hold to the disease that would kill her. 

I take a lot of comfort in knowing that she was right with God when she died. During a recent visit, she talked a lot about how she could feel Jesus inside her heart and that she had regular talks with God, who had given her peace with the reality of what was happening to her. 

My sweet Bevie is gone. Lover of horses, beaches, Donny Osmond, Elvis Presley, and love. My best friend, my most loyal protector, my biggest cheerleader.

Heaven rejoices as she reunites with my dad and so many others, and meets our little brother for the first time.

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