Hey, y'all. It's me. For real. I am blue. When I think of me as a Berd, I am usually blue. Not a sad blue, but more like a blue for a blue berd of happiness. The last three or four days have been colorless. My baby sister is in a coma. We were texting the other night after she told me she was in the hospital again. I wasn't feeling well and she couldn't sleep, so I told her to relax and try to sleep. Said I was charging my phone so I could call her in the morning. Guilt made me text her again a few minutes later. She didn't respond, so I assumed the nurse had given her something. I didn't hear from her again. Until JC told me the sad news.
JC drove me to Dallas yesterday. My sister's heart stopped beating. Her doctors brought her back. I call Mina the Come Back Kid. She's knocked on the Dark Door too frequently, and manages to change her mind. The last night we talked, she told me she was tired of being ill. Said once before that she gives up and doesn't even want to try sometimes. I get it. I am tired of her suffering and I am tired of us being so selfish--wanting her to stay when she wants to go.
Yesterday one of her doctors told me my sister is very ill. She put emphasis on very. There are genes in our family that wreak havoc and destruction, and most of us have never heard the names of the diseases they cause--until now. I still struggle to pronounce one of them. It makes my sister's and my aunt's nose bleed so hard, even cauterizing doesn't help. Mina's nostrils were so plugged with wads of gauze, her nose was disfigured. I lost count of all the tubes entering and exiting her frail body. All the machines keeping her alive made me feel helpless. But, she is fighting. She knew I was there. Her eyes moved, her right foot moved, her heart rate increased when I talked to her and when I asked if she heard me. Her doctor said she hears and understands. I promised I'd come back on Friday.
A four hour drive from Katy to Dallas felt like two on our way there. The two hours I spent with her felt like six. The drive back felt like twelve. I thought of my sister all the way there and back. No talking. Just me thinking. JC seemed to understand. I remembered the day Mama brought her home. She handed Mina to me and told me she was mine. Okay, thought I was cried out. Guess I'm not. So . . .
I took up my sketchbook and I did what I do best when I am . . . I did what makes me feel good now. No. My Therd Eye works for me during the day. Drawing takes me out of my head, too. So I drew, and I drew until I was tired. Then I drew some more. I drew little busy-work details. I drew some of the things Mina will recognize when she sees this. You see, I draw her a Berd every chance I get. She said the last one made her laugh so hard she hurt. She will recognize some of the things in the drawing, from my studio. She hasn't seen my cork board yet, so I included it in the drawing, although it doesn't hang behind my chair. I will tell her about it on Friday.
I will be gone for a while. I don't have anything good to write about any way, and I cannot bear telling everyone the same story over and over in a letter until I put down my pen and never come back. I figured saying it all here and now will be okay. There is humor in everything, so this Berd's for you, and Mina, and for all the Minas. The ICU was packed yesterday. One of the last things I said to her was, "Girl, I didn't know you were a brunette. All these years I thought you were blonde!" She moved her foot. Her eyes moved. LOL. Mina was born with a fist-size patch of bone white hair in the back of her head. Daddy swore she wasn't his 'cause his hair was jet black, and Mama's was too. Was a good thing she looked just like him.