Sisters: The Last of Three

 

There is no one like a sister. Sisters are constant, champions, and competitors. Margie, Judy, Jane. I am a sister. I had those relationships. I had them for the years I had them. They are always with me.

Three sisters. A trio, a triangle, a tripod, and a trilogy. Identified to be proud, secure, pointed in our corners of alterations and dissimilarities, our stories not what we dreamed but the sum of us, our genealogy, the Lipson girls.

To discover after so 20 years the cards and letters from my cherished sisters in my basement felt like a most precious gift. Unwrapping it, I was elated to read each and every word written to me by Margie and Jane. So many years I felt so crushed, broken, splintered.

The comfort of now knowing the absolute, undeniable, unconditional love Margie and Jane had for me and me for them centers me, brings me so much peace after so many years of tumult, uncertainty, pain, anguish, sorrow, and bereft.

The trio. Three girls.  The framed pictures of Margie’s bat mitzvah all three girls in dresses of varying shades of pink velvet. Margie’s dress a deeper raspberry color, Jane and I in matching lighter pink. All wearing fishnet stockings matching locket necklaces with a pink flower our names engraved on the back. Three individual shots sitting on the needlepoint piano bench created by out maternal grandmother stacked top to bottom, oldest to youngest, sharing vibrant smiles. A milestone, forever captured by the threesome. Margie 13, Judy 10, and Jane 7.

Sisters shared our strengths, our weaknesses, our darkness, our light, our cries, our laughter, and most of all our unconditional love. When they died, who would I share sacred special stories with? I need Margie and Jane as my compass, to guide me, to direct me, to be there when I fall and help me get up, be my sounding board, hear me, and be my voice. Even though they are physically not here, they are forever with me.

What agonized me the memories drifted away floated deep in the ocean that I cannot recall of Margie and Jane, my sisters, my livelihood, my childhood, my growth, and my aging. The stories that will not be told. As I write, scattered images surface. Snippets of lives, dreams, and hopes that I hang onto.

The more I contemplate with such gusto the scattered photos, letters and cards I cling to of Margie and Jane, the prism becomes so colorful of what a sister means. The connection, despite the horrific fights, darkest challenges, elated joyous celebrations, the deepest love knowing that no matter what your sister would walk through fire and be there for you. No one not anything can replace that relationship or should I try to. This is what I will cling to.

Being able to be honest and face all our warts, strengths, and realize how similar we truly are as sisters despite such diverse personalities, the core of our soul and beings bound. All three of us on some level insecure, confused about who we are and what we wanted, were each other champions and perhaps had we stepped back and embraced that and really communicated with each other. Would have should have doesn’t do any good but clearly despite all of our challenges three sisters, stacked together cemented our relationships.

Margie found a Hallmark book in November 1979 entitled “Thinking of You Sister…and the Memories, Joy, and Love We Share”

You’re my sister, and I love you.

Every time I think of you, I smile, just remembering all the good times we’ve had.

Sometimes I feel as if you’re another “me.”

You understand me so well and blend so perfectly with my changing moods.

When I’m with you I know I can be myself.

You probably never realized how proud I am to have you for a sister.

When I mention you to someone else, it always makes me feel go to put “my sister” in front of your name.

When we’re together we always find things to talk about and laugh about.

It’s difficult to ever really know anyone.

But I think we know each other as well as two people can.

But you never try to change me, make me over into someone else.

You know how to encourage me and how to criticize me without hurting my feelings.

I don’t know how you always find the right things to say, but I’m glad you do!

That’s why I feel so glad and so luck that I have you for a sister.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Judy Lipson

More Articles Written by Judy

I am a sister who sadly lost both my sisters. I lost my younger beloved sister Jane died at age 22 in an automobile accident in 1981, and my older beloved sister Margie passed away at age 35 after a 20-year battle with anorexia and bulimia in 1990. I am the sole surviving sibling. As the Founder and Chair of “Celebration of Sisters,” this annual ice skating fundraiser honors and commemorates the lives and memories of my beloved sisters to benefit The John D. Stoeckle Center for Primary Care Innovation at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA. The event is scheduled the first Sunday in November as Jane’s birthday was November 6th and Margie’s November 8th. We celebrate all lost siblings, their legacies as they live on in all of us. Since the inception of Celebration of Sisters in 2011, I have embarked on the journey to mourn the losses of my beloved sisters that had been suppressed for 30 years. The process unmistakably the greatest challenging time in my life proved to be the most empowering, enlightening and freeing. Now that I am allowing my sisters and their memories to return to my heart where they truly belong, I am re-discovering myself, happier and more at peace. I share my love of ice-skating as a skating instructor in the learn to skate programs at the Babson Skating School and Bay State Skating School, and as the Volunteer Coordinator for the Therapeutic Skating Program at The Skating Club of Boston. I live in Boston and am the mother of two grown daughters. It is my goal to advocate for sibling loss to insure surviving siblings are neither alone nor forgotten.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *