Some time back – maybe a dozen years – we (my siblings and I) discovered that not all was as we had imagined. We discovered that there was a family secret! A skeleton in the closet – a living sister.
We went about quietly trying to see if we could make contact with her. Sadly there were so many keepers of the secret, the task proved to daunting, and we were left to conclude that she did not want to know us. In light of all we knew, we concluded that we needed to respect that, as clearly she would have been through enough, already.
What we did not know was that she was also search for us, and being put off, and told that we knew nothing of her, and that even if we did we would want nothing to do with her. The same secret keepers that frustrated our search, frustrated her search as well.
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She found the eulogy I had delivered at my Mother’s Funeral, and she, correctly as it so happens, adduced that we did know, whilst for anyone who did not know it was not apparent, however as she knew, she was then able to conclude that we knew. Still she feared rejection.
Eventually someone in the circle suggested that she try to make contact, so that at least she would know and not die wondering.
Early one morning, not sleeping I crept down to the office, and check my email, I had an email from my secret sister. I emailed he back to say how excited we were, and crept back to bed, not sleeping at all. Finally my wife asked what the issue was, and I said ‘I have an email from Frances’ – and immediately she was bolt upright – for she knew what I had said. At 6.01 I texted my other sister to see if she was awake, and a new mood of excitement too over.
A great flurry of email occurred and then Frances suggested they might come a little further for their winter escape and visit the relies in Aus.
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And then she was here. The moment I met her I was overcome with the sense of ‘this person has been part of my life for ever’. I was catching up with someone I had never met. It has, for me at least a sense of completion, wholeness, renovation, liberation and light. Despite the bruises, and the failings all over the place, this was all good.
We the visit was an absolute treat, and such a great time. There was much to do, and much to talk about, and it was like the missing bit of the jigsaw was back. I wrote most of this some time back, and people told me I was going on about it too much. Anyway, here it is and published now.