Another short story I wrote back in 2008 to 2010 for The Cypress Times in Texas. I haven’t edited any of them but I thought I might share some of my old writing.
Carrie, you have wounded my heart. Why do you keep saying hurtful things?”
Carrie rolled her eyes. “Oh please, you’re so melodramatic, Sandy. Get over it.”
“You’re always insulting me in front of my friends. Why?”
“Why, why? Always, why? Sis, you just don’t get it. Read my lips. You…will…nev…ver…SING. Stop embarrassing yourself and I wouldn’t have to come to your rescue.”
Growing up in a family of five girls, Sandy always felt stuck in the middle. It wasn’t easy. She was the plain sister. Her hair was plain. Her face was plain. Her nose was plain. Sandy looked in the mirror. “My whole me is plain. But…I can sing,” she protested at the image. “I know I’m not perfect but from the moment I wake each morning, I wanted to sing.”
Sandy’s sisters constantly teased her about her singing. Carrie was the worst. She was a year older than Sandy and seemed to find joy in wounding her sister with her words. Carrie couldn’t sing. Actually, she hated singing. She would scream at any of her siblings for playing a record or if they hummed as they worked or played.
Just after Carrie’s seventeenth birthday, there was a huge argument between the five girls over the record-player disappearing. Carrie finally admitted she’d thrown it out. She stormed from the family home and moved up state with her boyfriend. Sandy never saw Carrie again. Marsha was the only one who kept in contact with Carrie…besides their mother. The teasing continued from the others but not as often or as cruel.
After high school, Sandy worked as a secretary for a pastor in a big church. One day, he heard her singing along to their church’s latest CD. She was busy typing the monthly newsletter and didn’t see him enter the church office. Usually the place was empty on Fridays so Sandy could sing to her heart’s content…where no-one would make fun of her. Pastor Lloyd was just standing there, leaning on the door-frame. It gave Sandy the fright of her life. Her face burned with embarrassment.
Sandy and the Pastor had a long talk that day about her voice and experience…or rather, lack of. Within a few weeks, Sandy was singing back-up on Sundays and shortly after, the music director allowed Sandy to sing her first solo.
That was nine years ago. Sandy finally got over the hurt she grew up with…or so she thought.
Sandy and her husband, Geoff, had not long arrived home from church, when Geoff went to the study to put his Bible away. Sandy was preparing lunch when the telephone rang. with her hands in water, Sandy let Geoff take the call and kept working.
“Honey, it’s your sister…Carrie.”
Gingerly Sandy accepted the phone. Carrie’s taunts echoed in her head…they still hurt.
Sandy squeezed her eyes shut and tried to focus. “Hello.”
Sobs and hic-cups muffled the words. “Sandy…hic Marsha gave me your…hic number. What’s your address? I need to see you.”
Sandy’s eyes sprang open. “Carrie, where are you? What’s wrong?”
“Stan’s left me…for another woman…hic…again. But…hic that’s not why I called…hic. Please, Sandy.”
Sandy gave Carrie their address and hung up. Geoff knew of Sandy’s years of her sisters’ relentless insults. There was nothing Geoff and Sandy didn’t share. She admitted mixed emotions about seeing Carrie and Geoff prayed for wisdom and peace. Sandy was so afraid she would be wounded again.
Carries arrived shortly before two o’clock the following afternoon. She talked non-stop and seemed genuinely happy to see Sandy and Geoff. Her frail figure worried Sandy though.
“Carrie, are you okay? You said yesterday that Stan had left you,” she paused. “You’re also looking…unwell.”
Carrie burst into tears. Geoff left the women alone. Sandy wasn’t sure if it was Carrie’s bawling which made him feel awkward; as it did her, or if he thought it was best for the sisters to sort it out themselves. They were still talking when Geoff returned a few hours later.
“Geoff,” Sandy said quietly. “Please sit for a moment.”
Carrie filled him in on some general pieces of conversation before Sandy continued. “Geoff, Carrie’s kidneys are failing,” she said her voice quiet. “Without a donor, she could die. Marsha, Eleanor and Sophie, aren’t compatible and she’s asked me to be tested. We do have the same blood-type. What should we do?”
Geoff took his wife’s hand. “What do you think you should do, Sandy? It’s your call.”
Sandy searched his eyes, trying to see his thoughts, and then turned to see Carrie’s tear-stained face. Sandy took a deep breath and looked into her sister’s pleading eyes. She felt her anguish. “I think it’s time for wounded hearts to heal.”
© Chrissy Siggee
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.