You’re Not There

I remember your very first singing recital.
You wore a puffy orange and yellow outfit.
And to be honest, you looked like a Big Stick Popsicle.

Regardless of your ridiculous get up,
You were fearless on the stage.
You had more confidence at four years old than I did at 11.

I remember being nervous for you that day,
And every day after that whenever you performed.
It must have been an older sister, protective thing,
That I probably didn’t show,
Because I wasn’t good at showing emotions back then.

Throughout the years,
Recitals turned into talent shows.
And talent shows turned into open mics.

You probably don’t know this, but,
Watching you at open mics are some of my best memories of you.
I can still picture you on stage with your guitar,
Belting out one of your originals.

After removing toxic people from my life,
I avoided open mic nights for years.
Because I didn’t want to be reminded of you.
And I tried to act like you never existed.
Because it was easier to do that,
Than come to grips with the fact that you and I are no longer sisters.

But then the other night,
Rob and I went to an open mic.
And part of me wished to see you there.
While I watched in the crowd.
Like old times.

But then I realized that the old times are dead.
And so are we.

I have been working on letting you go.
I did let you go.
And I thought I was good.
But I guess I’m not.
I’m not over not having you as a sister.
No matter how hard I push the memory of you away,
The sadness is still there.

This is something I learned that night at the open mic.
When I was flooded with memories.
Happy memories of you.
Of us.
And these happy memories eventually made me sad.
Because I realized that we will never make memories again.
You and I,
As sisters.

I will never see you perform at an open mic ever again.
And it felt weird being there without you.
I felt kind of empty.

But what really made me sad that night,
Was the exact moment I looked at the stage and realized…
You’re not there.

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