As I'm sure most of you know, I only have one sibling left. We are the bookends of the family. There are the folks, who will be 92 this summer (Mom in less than a week!) and there are Candy and I. I am the oldest, Candy is the youngest. We have lost the two in the middle, which has left a gaping hole. But this hole has strengthened our friendship, partially because we have no-one else to turn to when we talk about brothers and sisters or other family matters.
Candy was born this day many years ago (I dare not say how many - she might kill me and then she would only be one --- but what would SHE do, then?) ... and I remember that day well.
I am 7 years older (do the math, people) so I was THERE when Dad took us to the hospital. Back in the "good old days," children were not allowed in the hospital to visit, no matter how desperate the situation. Your father / mother / sibling / grandparent might be dying but YOU had to stay outside the hospital, or perhaps in the waiting room and not contaminate the sterile conditions in the patient's room. So, since we couldn't visit Mom, Dad took us to the side of the hospital, pointed to the window where Mom waved at us and told us we had a baby sister. I don't remember knowing a baby was coming - women didn't mention their "situations" to their children often, back then - and I probably never noticed that Mom was "getting fatter."
Be that as it may, Candy graced us with her presence that year and has been an important person to me ever since. Being 7 years apart, we didn't do much together as youngsters. Cara was the middle child and was closer in age to Candy, so they were together most of the time. Charles was closer to my age so he and I did a lot of things together (partially because I wanted to be a boy, so I did "boy things" with him).
But now that she lives 6 miles (as the crow flies) / 9 miles (by road) from me, we do much more together. We craft together and go to fiber events together. We grumble about husbands together (even the most perfect ones cause grumbling, sometimes, and who can understand that more than a sister who has one almost exactly like hers?). We visit the folks together (sometimes) or do chores at home for the one who is visiting. We shop together - once a month we head to Sam's and Walmart for the BIG monthly shopping.
And 7 years don't seem to be such a separation (unless *I* get senior citizen discounts and she doesn't - yet) because of our similar interests and hobbies.
So, in honor of her birthday, I am going to share some pictures with you to show how she has grown.
Happy Birthday, Candy. I have always loved you and still do.
Grandpa Childs with us four - me on our left, Charles in the middle, Cara on our right and Candy in Grandpa's arms
Actually, this is mis-labeled; Candy was born in Moorehead, so this was taken before we moved to Bemidji
THIS was taken in the Bemidji area ... Grandpa Childs is in the background.
This is Itasca State Park, birthplace of the Mississippi River. Grandpa is walking across the Mississippi!
Cara and Candy "studying" in Japan.
Even 7 years apart, some people thought we were twins.
This is in 1966, just before I got married - Dad got us matching outfits.
Our Siberian Husky, Seegoo, is in the background.
After she was married, sometime (no idea of the year)
Sisters, close in years, close in the heart
At daughter Brook's wedding