Today is my sister Donna's birthday and although I could never top what I wrote last year, I will still give her a deserving tribute. Donna and I are back to back on the food chain in our family, numbers 5 and 6 of 8 and with only 3 of us being girls, we have always been close. The three of us shared one room and one dresser, each getting two drawers and one closet. Several months ago I was cruising through the old hood and happened upon an Open House at the house where we grew up. I stopped immediately and went in. The Real Estate lady announced that it had just sold as I walked in the door but still allowed me to look around. I had to laugh at the lack of changes in all these years. I wandered up the stairs to the bedrooms and paused as I entered where Jeanne and Donna and I used to stay. (Jeanne more often than us because of the groundings but I'll get to that on her birthday.) The room brought back many memories of which I'd like to share with Donna on this special day.
The window that overlooked the back yard was much smaller than I remembered and so was the air vent right below in the floor. I'd like to apologize again today for dropping your goldfish down that vent and him dying a few days later despite me cleaning the dust from his gills. Between that window and the closet door I envision our bunk beds. Oh the many nights you pushed up on the springs above your head to irritate me and I'm sure I hadn't done a thing to provoke you. How many times I climbed down the headboards to step in your gum you had stuck on the top of yours so it wouldn't end up in your hair in the middle of the night. You always were one for ABC gum. How in the world did we fit our toys and our clothes in that tiny walk in closet? The plywood dad put up for shelves was still there and some scraps of the paper we covered the shelves with was still glued to certain parts. We shared that cardboard Barbie Dream House that we dragged in and out of that closet because there was no room to leave it set up all the time. You know, when I walked in that room, I could only think of happy memories. Even when we tortured each other, we seemed to laugh about it later. As I've said before, you handed down more to me than just clothes and shoes and bicycles. You handed down friendship and love and a work hard ethic that naturally rubbed off as we have grown together. And for all these things I am grateful. Happy Birthday Sista!