Today is a day of reflection for my family, friends and for me. It's the day that marks my sister's passing. Five years ago my little sister Kerstin passed away in a car accident. It's been hard the past five years, the hurt and sadness is still there but instead of focusing on that, I try to focus on the good memories and fun times we had.
I think this is important for any one who has lost someone in their life, try to focus on the memories that you created together, the times where you would laugh and roll on the floor, or when you cooked and spent quality time with one another. Yes there are the times that you fought or caught them using your clothes and they deny it, but that is what made you stronger as family, siblings or friends.
I have thought of all the times my sisters and I fought when we were getting ready for school. How I wanted to get there a little early and they said that it's stupid to get there 15 minutes early lol... I can laugh now because it was a silly little argument that had no barring on what would happen a few hours later or a few months or years later. As I think of it now, happy to have had that experience, tears rolling down my cheek, wishing I could have that now.
Even though I think of those memories, the ones that pop in my mind are the ones when we would have our deep conversations over the phone or in person about life, friends, passion or desire to do what we loved. I think of when our family would go to Disney with family friends, be silly and have fun. I think over the years how both my sisters have grown into beautiful ladies and how I am thankful to have them as sisters.
I remember exactly how my day was five years ago. Getting ready for school, I only had two classes on Thursday. I remember thinking I wanted to call my sister before class since it had been awhile since I talked to her. I was running late, got to class and thought I'd call her after. After leaving class I forgot to call and said I would call later in the afternoon. Then I was cleaning up, getting ready for an interview for a part time job and saw a missed call from my mom. I saw a voicemail but just called her so I could chat. I called and then she told me what I never imagined. Kerstin passed away in a car accident. My heart dropped, crashed to the floor and my mind went blank. It wasn't possible, I couldn't fathom it being true. I didn't know how to react, I was empty, I didn't know whether to cry, to scream, to stare at a wall.
The next few hours were a daze but I remember them being clear as day. I had support from those close to me, comforting me and just being there. I was very thankful for it all. It was hard to grasp what just happened, let alone accept it. I got on the plane, had that dream that I described on my first blog post - my sister visiting me in my dreams, telling me that she 'can't come in but will be ok'.
The next day my family and I went to the funeral home where her body was. I saw her. It wasn't her because her soul, her spirit, was gone, no longer here with us. It was hard but at the same time I wanted to see her. I made the decision to see her. She had expressed that if she passed, she would want to be cremated. Later that day, we went to gather the rest of her things from her car. We saw what was left of the 4runner, it was pretty badly damaged, not repairable at all. Again, I wanted to see the car, to see what happened. Thinking back to it all, it was a hard to go through it all but I was there in that situation, we all were.
Thinking back to that day and the days that followed, going through her things, seeing photos, having flash backs of memories and events in our lives, it was emotional but it's a part of the process. People asked me how I did it, how I got through it, how do I move forward. You have too. But at the same time, you make that decision to move forward. I made the decision to move forward and keep going. You can't stay stuck in the past; yes, remember the good memories and special times you shared but continue to move forward with your life. Kerstin would want me to move forward and live life every day. That's what she used to do and she would want all her loved ones to do their own 'thing' and follow their dreams.
This was an emotional post, but it feels good to write it and share my experience, hopefully I can help those who have gone through a similar experience. Make sure to tell your loved ones that you love them. If you have an urge to call or text your family or friend or person in your life, do so, don't wait. Life can change in a matter of seconds. Make every day worth it and live your life! Be grateful for the opportunities that you have as some may never have that chance. To all those in my life, thank you for all the support and love that you have offered and shared, I am forever thankful. Rest in peace Kerstin.