The differences between them open up, petals unfolding one by one.  Even when I try not to notice them, they're there, the disparities expanding beyond my own imagining, the siblings not sharing much of anything like the same stage of life.
She would have been great, too, I'm convinced, but for the build up of proteins in her brain, beginning even as she burrowed small and silenced in my womb.  Silenced again, I speak to her in kind, the second language of my motherhood.  I carry some fear that she'll think, in whatever way she thinks, we have given up on her.  And I quietly promise her that we haven't.

When he looks at her a universe of sorrow, wide and dark, dwells in her daddy's eyes.  A lifetime imagined there, and then another more sober one constructed gradually of the realization that this is, in fact, her fate, that our daughter's life will not be long.  Yet his eyes make the same wordless promise.
And as each day is lived for the first and last time, her brother demonstrates, over and over again, that we are all more than the first different thing about us.  Even though her vitality fades, she will forever play a vital role in his story, will always be a silky shadow stitched to his feet.  They do not share the same stage of life, but they share things beyond milestones and promises.  He tells her in his own way that she is special, that she is great, and I am convinced she knows.


Janet said...

I'm recalling that on Sunday afternoon, Tucker sat next to her on the windowseat and said "I'm eating memellows, Cewie". She is sister, partner and companion to him. Celia has etched herself on his heart forever.

The Wendels said...

And they are a pair as Molly cannot speak Tucker's name without Celia's following and vice versa.

Anonymous said...

She will always, always, always be his best buddy and forever sister.