Monday, September 22

Letter from Jan to Ann

Ann, we are 69 years of age today.  I can't grasp you are in heaven. 

We began as one egg. You pushed yourself out first and you have marched ahead of me again into heaven. You know we never really talked about death and dying except it just couldn't happen. But three months before you died, do you remember saying, "I have to die first. You have Tom. I would be alone."  I continue to have these awful mishaps, diarrhea everywhere, falling over the open dishwasher door, breaking more bones - I carry my pain alone. You are in heaven, your suffering is over. Hurray for you!  And you were right, I couldn't have made it without Tom. 

Sometimes I wail out your name. So many things I want to say to you. A new makeup I found. A new book. A sad feeling. I've talked to all your children. Brock is sending me a new blender. Mine is broken. I know you would be proud. Honey, you lost touch of all the millions who are changed today because of you. Remember Phillip Russell, your ROTC partner?  He called. The only person from school I would even recognize. We graduated 51 years ago.  He and I have had really honest talks about being haoles.  How ugly and inferior we felt.

Ann, we have laughed and snuggled in beds with our magazines, spoken on the same platforms, argued fiercely.  Never free for a day to be just ourselves. We had to always wonder what the other one was doing or getting.  I don't have to worry about my weight anymore.  It's a relief, honey. Why did you need to be so much smaller than me?

You are brilliant, beautiful, gifted and the most loving person I've ever met. I'm struggling with being overly defensive. I always have been a fighter. Another thing I wish we could talk about. While I feel a big piece pulled a part of me when you died, I carry you with me everywhere I go. Thank you for sharing your world, your great friends, your blessings. God poured great blessings into both of our lives, but I still become someone special, "magical", to people when I say I'm the twin sister of Ann Kiemel Anderson.

I crawled into your hospital bed minutes after you died, honey, and wrapped my arms around you, kissed you, cried, and knew my life would never be the same again. Wait for me, I'm right behind you!

I will always love you, darling.   Jan