It's weird being here. There are so many signs of my sister, it feels like we've all been flung in different directions and I'm the first one home. When that used to happen when I was in college, I would cook dinner. Only now, no one is coming home.
It's still so hard to admit she's gone. She's still here. There's her lip gloss beside her favorite chair. I take a nap in it and realize the blanket still smells like her. My brother-in-law gives me clothes of hers for me and my mother. I bury my face in them, breathe her in and cry.
Her favorite candles and lotion are still in the bathroom. Magazines she was reading are still dog-earred and waiting for her to pick them up again. I find devotional books for people with cancer. One of them was given to her by a friend who passed a year and a half before Patsy. I flip through them to see what passages she may have read. Did she find comfort in those leaves? I can't tell...
Her angels - she started collecting them over 20 years ago, early in round one of her battle - are everywhere in this house.
I find her suduko book and marvel at her ways. I love seeing her writing there. She finished her puzzles one by one, front to back, easy to hard. And even though the answers were in the back, she never looked. But she would X out a puzzle in frustration.
And I can see how her hand was less certain near the end of her work in this book. I can see her struggle...
Her medication is here, in front of me on the kitchen table. Suppositories for pain, pills for nausea, diarrhea, constipation, shortness of breath, anti anxiety and the endless collection of eye drops she required to soothe her eyes from her last round of chemo.
I know she is better off. I asked her to come visit me before she died and she has...twice. Most recently when, for a few minutes, I thought Mom was having a heart attack in the hospital. I'm at peace that she's not in pain any more.
But sitting here in her house, knowing we're all supposed to move on and feeling that I'm the only one who has not, it feels like I'm just waiting for my sister. Just waiting for her to get home. I think I'm gonna wait a little while longer.