I am writing this to never send to you because I do not actually wish to reopen a dialogue with you. Our relationship has always been toxic for me but there were good things and there are things I still hold dear, advice and lessons learnt from you.
I wish that you had given me the opportunity to forge an honest relationship with you on terms that did not surround my attempt to have an honest dialogue with our mother. I wish that you had not felt it was your duty to defend our mother and her perspective of events that I wished to disuss with her. I wish that we could have had another conversation, in person, just the two of us. I wish you were coming to my wedding.
Your letter to me was so vicious. Thorny vines dipped in honey designed to entrap me in a web of self doubt and self loathing. No more. Your poison words cannot touch me here. Your lies cannot take seed inside me any longer. I loved you and hated you more than I thought possible.
You’ve been jealous of me for a long time. You and mother have both felt that it was important to make sure I knew that Grandma and Grandpa viewed me as “the favorite” by telling me constantly growing up and as an adult. You even mentioned that in your letter to me. I don’t really know what to tell you. I’m sorry you felt slighted. I’m sorry you felt neglected. I did too.
I’m tired Sister. I want to live my life honestly. I want to be able to talk about my trauma without fearing that I’m actually an insane person who has invented their entire life because they are selfish. Do you remember telling me how selfish I am? Do you remember those words designed to cut me down and make me beg for your love and acceptance? When I read the part of your letter were you stated I had invented my history, that my memories were false, well… I knew then that our relationship could not continue.
You told me to be the change you want to see. I took your advice. I’ve reinvented myself many times. If I’ve been unhappy, I changed things. I stopped settling. I kept reaching for better. I often think about that, be the change you want to see. You gave that to me, and I thank you for that. I don’t think another single thing you said has ever stuck with me as profoundly as that. It shaped me. It’s part of who I am now, a part of myself I nurture daily.
I know I’ll always think of you. I will try to focus on the gifts you left me, and not the poison you fed me, but I will not forget. It’s part of me. It is my history. It is my truth and life. I will not let anyone take that away from me again. No one should suffer the psychological torment that you and I both endured growing up. I hope your healing journey allows you to accept that we both suffered.
-Your little sister
PS: Milk and crackers.