Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Mary Would Be Fifty


      Mary Carol Pierce, about 1960




When Mom or Grandma would get out old pictures and tell stories I used to be impatient, but here I am doing the same thing.  Yesterday my youngest sister Mary would have been fifty.  She died unexpectedly two weeks after her 40th birthday, so it has been nearly ten years.  She was a tender soul whose physical and emotional frailties prevented her from doing many ordinary things.  She had jobs, but never a career.  She loved children but never married. She loved the ocean but never saw it in person.  Some time around her birthday she called me on the telephone.  I wasn't home, so her message was left on tape. It still is, somewhere in a drawer. She wanted us to get together, do something as sisters.  I was busy - really busy - with teaching, coaching, heavens knows what.  I meant to call her, should have called her.  But I didn't call her back in time.  It is one of the great regrets of my life, and I hope she forgave me.

Regret of course, is a useless thing.  All I can do now is honor  her memory and hope I learned the great lesson she taught me about impermanence, and about how important it is to get one's priorities in order.  All I can do is live life as well as I can, work on what's important to me, and remember to put the  people I love first.

9 comments:

JoAnn said...

Regret may be useless, but it is something we all have to deal with. What a sad story.....

J

Ann said...

Such a touching story. She was beautiful and you honor her well here. Take care.

Nancy said...

What a beautiful tribute. Thank you for sharing that with us! Sisters are special.

Casey Klahn said...

Thank you for posting this, I am glad (and privileged) that I got to read it.

laura said...

I am sorry for your loss, Sherry. How awful to lose someone so young! Thank you for this reminder of our fragility.

Kim said...

I'm touched by your sister's story, yours, and your honoring her. Thank you for sharing her with us.

Oma3 said...

My 32 year old daugher died suddenly 8 years ago and I support you for honoring her. One never knows what will happen tomorrow and it is good to celebrate each day and always let others know they are loved. Thanks for your lovely thoughts.

Sharon said...

How awful for her to die so young. This is a very special post Sherry.

Margaret Ann said...

Beautiful soulful words...