This past week, I was barely here. I struggled to blog, to sew, to concentrate.
My younger sister was struggling to breathe.
Only days earlier, our lives had been fairly normal. We texted back and forth about our daily life with teen girls, weird worries, neuroses, jobs, vacations, parents, in-laws, husbands, houses, pets.
But at the end of last week she was admitted into the ICU. Pneumonia and sepsis. And by day three she was still struggling despite numerous interventions. Breathing tubes, fluid draining, antibiotics.
My world grew silent and filled with worry and the unknown. No amusing texts from my sister. No calls. Just silence. A silence that rapidly filled with medical updates. All of us trying to get information. My father, a doctor, interpreted:
This was not the usual pneumonia. That's streptococcus pneumonia. This was alpha streptococcus. Far more virulent. Overtaking both lungs quickly and then seeping into her blood. It had hidden and taken over her body in just a few short days. They would try this intervention, then that, and then they could possibly try this...
On my first two visits, she could not talk, she was covered in tubes and struggled to breathe. I tried to bargain with the medical Gods.
And I worried.
Had I been a good enough sister? Did she know how much I loved her? Did I deserve such an adorable sister? Had I taken her for granted?
I was scared. Each morning I was unsure what that day would offer, or take.
And then on day six, I went in again. I couldn't concentrate. I was having trouble walking, eating, working, exercising, knowing she couldn't do any of these things.
And to my surprise, behind the heavily guarded ICU door, there was a gift— my sister, almost as she had been. We laughed, talked, commiserated, worried but mostly we just breathed relief together.
Those five days taught me an invaluable lesson... just how magical my sister is. I knew this, but I guess I didn't know it deep enough.
She is immeasurably magical.