Wednesday, 14 September 2011

The Gallery...Happy Memories of my Big Sister

Tara's prompt this week is a Happy Memory.  Of course my happiest times nowadays involve my wonderful husband and  my amazing children. They continue to deliver me so many happy memories it would be hard to pinpoint just one.  So instead I'm looking back to a time before I had my own family, who are the major source of my current happiness.  I'm going back to my own childhood.

I'm the little one.
 The best thing about my childhood was having my two big sisters.  Although whatever we did as children would inevitably end in tears (usually mine!)  I always had someone there for me.  As I got older I appreciated my big sisters more and more, spending time with them when they left home.

My eldest sister Carol became my confidante, my inspiration and my hero.  I adored her and her confident, devil-may care attitude to life.  She was ten years my senior, but we both had our first child within 18 months of each other.  I spent so much time at her house.  Shadowing her.  Idolising her.  She was funny, hilariously funny.  There was nothing she wouldn't do for a laugh, and there was never a dull moment when I was with my big sister.  There was nothing conventional about my sister, she was one of a kind and I have so many happy memories of being with her.  Shopping, eating, watching TV, socialising, dancing, singing...everything was done with a zest for life and a warmth that I've never encountered in anyone else before or since. 

This photo was taken in Windsor Great Park the morning after a family party to celebrate my mum's 60th birthday.  Carol (middle on the pic) was on top form as she always was, making us all laugh and making us all feel special.  She had a real gift for creating happiness and she shared it selflessly.  She was an absolute legend.

I have so many happy memories of spending time with Carol during my teens and my early 20's.  It breaks my heart that it came to an end sixteen years ago, when her life was taken away by the indiscriminate evil that is cancer.  I miss my sister so much, but the happy memories can never be erased.  I love you Carol and always will.


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