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  • Erin Phillips

The Reality is That You Will Grieve Forever…

"The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not 'get over' the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but, you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to."


ELIZABETH KUBLER-ROSS + JOHN KESSLER

February 9th is a really difficult day for me. I don't really like talking about it because I usually just turn into a sobbing, red, blotchy-faced mess... February 9th is the day that my sister, Lauren, passed away. 

Lauren and I were best friends. We didn't have a care in the world. We had each other and that was all that mattered. When our family lost Lauren, my perfect little world came crashing down. I didn't understand what happened or where she went or why she wasn't coming home… Tomorrow, February 9, 2019, will mark the 24th anniversary of Lauren's passing and although I now know she is up in Heaven, I still don't understand why... I know that God has his reasons for everything - no matter how sad or difficult it may seems - and I know he has a plan... But I just wish that I knewwhy


I have been blessed with seven sisters. Two of my sisters are really close in age... similar to Lauren and I. Envious doesn't even begin to explain how I felt towards them growing up. I think I was bitter and angry and sad, but I took it out on them. It's really confusing growing up with a heavy heart. You want to be a happy kid, carefree and crazy (which I was for the most part), but at the same time there is this unexplainable sadness. I honestly think that that is the reason why I wasn't always the nicest older sister... and instead of loving the fact that I had more sisters, I pushed them away and held on to the memory of the one that I lost.  I remember watching them experience everything together... Playing on the same teams, having the same group of friends, wearing matching clothes - they were practically twins... and I just couldn't handle it. My coldheartedness literally had NOTHING to do with them personally... but because I know that Lauren and I would've been exactly like that. They were so lucky to be as close as they were and I was just jealous. And instead of trying to be the happy older sister that hung out with her younger sisters, I was the grumpy older sister that hid in her room and kicked them out if they tried to "bother" me...

*(PSA: I know how lucky I was to have them and how lucky that I am today to have them. We have all grown beautiful relationships with each other. They are the best sisters to me and the best aunties to my daughters. We’re all best friends and I love them all more than anything.)


To this day I still can't stand February 9th. Like clockwork, I turn into an emotional wreck every year about halfway through the day on February 8th... I think it's just all of the emotions and feelings and everything that I have kept bottled up inside throughout the year. After 24 years, it still feels like yesterday. I am 27 years old but flashback to being a scared, curious, sad almost 4 year old wondering why my sister didn't come home...


You would think that after almost a quarter of a century it would get easier but in all honesty I think it has only gotten harder. I will never get over losing my sister. I have rebuilt myself and have grown from the loss that my family has suffered. I am whole again, but I am not the same.


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