When I was born many years ago, my mother became quite ill. Her thyroid quit on her and depression set in. Imagine having a brand new baby and being in the throes of depression?
My grandmother came to care for her daughter and the family, but a son-in-law, two other children, and a new baby presented her with a lot to do.
I was a sweet baby, but let’s face it, I was a 9 pound-plus baby who liked to eat, even back then.
Thus, my five and a half-year-old sister became my mother. She changed diapers, fed me my bottle, and cooed at me and lulled me to sleep.
It took my mother a long time to recover, and by the time she was stable on thyroid medication, I had bonded with my sister.
When I would fall and have a boo-boo I wanted Mel. If I woke in the night with a bad dream, I wanted Mel. I think, looking back, it must have been hard for my mother to see that her baby, didn’t come running to her.
But you see, I was very lucky. Melodie was the best thing that ever happened to me.
My Mom suffered from deep depression most of the remainder of her life. The dark moods often came when I would need a mother the most, and for me, Melodie was always there.
I joke with her kids that I was her first child, but in reality, I really was. She would give me baths, read to me, and calm my fears and pains. She even snuck into the hospital to see me, when at age four I had my appendix out.
I have not seen her since Christmas. Although we talk on the phone every day. In fact, if life gets crazy and I don’t call, she worries! And if I don’t hear from her, I also get concerned.
Sometimes if you are lucky, and your birth mother cannot be there for you, due to illness or perhaps they were young and unable to care for you, another woman will step in and fill that role.
For me, it was my sister, Melodie. Young as she was, she stepped up to the plate. She loves with her whole heart and she loves deeply. How fortunate I have been to have her in my life.
I love you, Melodie!