June 25, 2012

To You


I'm at a loss for words. It's been over a week and I still don't think I've fully accepted that you're gone. It's been a living nightmare and I wish that there was some way for you to tell us that it's ok. That you're ok. If this had happened because of a car accident, I'd be just as upset but I could rationalize and accept it. But that's not what happened. You were taken. And for that I will always be angry.

I can't help but be filled with regret on times I've missed with you. When you were little and I had to watch you and Billy everyday after school. I was so angry with Mom and Dad. Why did I have to do it? It wasn't my responsibility. I wanted to hang out with my friends and go do things. I'm now haunted by the memories of you guys asking me to play a game and me telling you no, to go watch TV because I wanted to be on the phone with a friend. I was 14, it was what 14 year olds do. But looking back, even before this, I regret those lost moments. I know I can't change them, but know I'm sorry.

When I found out I was going to be an Aunt I was skeptical. Not about the facts, but that this would turn out to be a "good thing" like everyone was saying. How can 16 and pregnant be a good thing? I was so disappointed in you, scared for you, mad for our parents loss of "freedom" to go away for weekends, etc. But you were determined to see this through. I wasn't a fan of the name you chose, I'm still warming to using it, but when someone made the comment that "you were a car and she's a car" it made so much sense. Shelby and Chevelle, great cars at that. I guess you knew what you were doing. And then I saw her and I was so proud of you. You were obviously stronger than me. I don't know if I could have done what you did. You took on everyone. Not that it was ok but you spoke to our parents in a way that I would have never even attempted. You probably should have worked on the word choices but the point is, you spoke your mind no matter who was on the receiving end.

And then I came home when Mom called me with this tragic news. I'll never forget it. I came as soon as I could. I took on the rock role. Not that I wouldn't anyway, but I had to. I couldn't let Mom and Dad make those decisions. I had to protect them. To be strong for everyone. Parents aren't supposed to be predeceased by their children. It's not the way it's supposed to happen. It was easier for me to step up and do everything, not only to shield them, but to stay busy to keep myself from shutting down.

As it turns out, Chevelle is going to be a saving grace. Without her, I think Mom and Dad would be completely lost. Through her, you're still here. She looks exactly like you when you were her age. They have to take care of her now. We all do. And we will. She is loved by everyone. There's actually a line of people to babysit her. And me? I'm the proudest Aunt you'll ever see. In the week I was there everything changed. I never understood what people were always talking about but now I get it. My relationship with CJ is beyond important. It's my job to be her friend, mentor and confidant. And I will be all of those things. And when she asks about you I will tell her what she wants to know. I'll tell her how pretty you were. How you were your own person. The jokes you made. The things you did that annoyed me or made me laugh. I'll make sure she knows exactly who her mother was. How much you wanted and loved her even in the short time you had together. She's going to be spoiled. After all, that is my job.

Yesterday was hard, today feels barely easier. I feel lost. I miss you, so very much. You'll never be forgotten. I refuse to let that happen.


  1. Random GirlJune 27, 2012

    My heart breaks for you and your family. But you are so right, it is your job now to be what your sister can't be for her daughter now, you will be the one that helps her learn about her mother and all the reasons why she, and you, should think she was wonderful and unique and most importantly loved. Hugs to you! 

  2. This is beautiful.  I am so sorry for your familys loss.  I could not even begin to imagine the hurt and feelings you are experiencing.  What a wonderful person your sister was.  What a wonderful sister you were to her.

  3. justkeepinitrealfolksJune 27, 2012

    I have been thinking about you and praying for you since I read your last post. This one just breaks my heart. I have no doubt Chevelle will be loved beyond belief and your family will keep her mother's memory alive for her.

  4. So sad. You're on my mind. I'm so sorry for your loss.

  5. The ManagementJune 29, 2012

    I'm so sorry for your loss.

  6. I cried reading this.


    Keep writing.

  7. StephanieC | SRSJuly 12, 2012

    I am so so sorry. I know words won't make it any less soul-crushing or any better... just want you to know that I am thinking of you and your family.

    I think your plan to be a supportive aunt who will let Chevelle know all about her mom is a wonderful idea.

    I hope your heart hurts a little less every day, knowing Shelby will never be forgotten. Again, my thoughts are with you, and I truly wish you comfort at such a surreal time.