I believe in the saying that every cloud has a silver lining. Some major changes have happened in my family recently, mainly involving my younger sister, that have made me believe in this saying more now then ever.
When my younger sister was in High School she started to act out. She was basically just following her own beat, not listening to anyone or caring about anybody but herself. She started to do very dumb things that made everyone concerned. A minor example was when she got a tattoo of her good friend’s initials on her wrist, in hopes that her friend would do the same, which she never did.
After my younger sister graduated from High School, she enlisted in the Air Force. We all thought enlisting would help her mature out of her wild ways. She had been in the Air Force for only six months when just after her nineteenth birthday, she informed us that she was engaged to be married. A month after her engagement, she let us know that she was pregnant with twins. This news was a real shock at first, but after a while everyone calmed down, and started to look forward to the wedding and the babies. Sadly, the excitement was short lived.
Seventeen weeks into my sister’s pregnancy she lost one of the babies, and at twenty weeks she lost the other. To help my sister (and now her new husband) through their rough time, the family pulled together as a strong support system. Even our half brother came down from Japan, where he is stationed, to come see her. My sister and I had not seen him in over seven years.
The tragedy of my sister losing her twins was depressing but had a positive effect on my sister and the family as a whole. My sister matured so fast during her pregnancy that all of the childish thoughts and activities that she used to do and care about seemed to become childish to her. Her maturing helped her in developing stronger relationships with our parents. Over the past few years my dad and sister did not really get along at all, but the news of the babies seem to have given them both a new look on life about one another. My mother and sister had a pretty good relationship, but when my sister told her that she was pregnant they became even closer. My mom became her rock, her biggest supporter.
Somehow, we all knew that my sister was not ready for parenthood, no matter how much she may have matured during this time. The loss of the babies was the hardest experience in the world for all of us, but on a positive note, it brought us all together as a family, and my sister matured into a very bright young lady. A great good came out of this experience even though it originated out of something very bad.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.