Monday, May 24, 2021

Thank You

I took a break last week because my sister's youngest son died unexpectedly last Sunday. Bryan was only 33-years-old and his passing left the whole family shocked and deeply saddened. John and I drove home from Maryland, then he turned around and went back down as he had to be at work this week. But my place was with my sister, so I've spent the week with her, making food, folding laundry, and maybe most importantly, re-learning how to play Barbies. 

When I got to her house on Sunday, Jill had two of Bryan's three children with her, and it looked like she desperately needed a nap. The girls are four and six years old and were playing with multiple Barbie dolls and Barbie's multi-level pink plastic camper. Jill and I played with Barbie, Midge, Ken, Skipper, Alan, and Tutti quite a bit, so I thought I could take over while Jill rested a bit. Surely playing Barbie was still in my skill set and it would all come back to me, just like riding a bicycle. 


But I had forgotten a few things. The last time I played with Barbie was probably more than 50 years ago, Barbie and her accessories have changed quite a bit in that time, and I had completely forgotten that small children have a miniscule attention span. 


I was slightly fascinated with the camper's cab. It seemed to double as both the bathroom and the area where the driver sat. See those rear view mirrors? The sink flips over to reveal the steering wheel. I was amazed and amused at all of this and the girls thought it was funny that I was having trouble making Barbie drive from the bathroom. So instead we made the Barbies do flips and gymnastics, took them outside to climb trees, swing on the swing set, run races, and play hide and seek. Then we played with ipads so I could rest a bit. Jill reminded me that much of what we did when we played was spend hours setting up Barbie, her furniture, food, and wondering why the only clothing we had for Ken was a bathing suit and a tuxedo. 

Barbie has changed, I've changed, and our families have changed. The changes haven't all been for the better, but I'm glad I could be with my sister when the worst happened. 

I'd like to express sincere thanks to those of you that e-mailed, texted, and sent loads of support and strength. I could barely stand to see my sister in so much pain, but your kindness and thoughtfulness made it much easier for me to help her. I thank you.

18 comments:

  1. Bonny, I am so sorry for your family's loss. Unexpected death of a young person is always devastating. I hope your sister and your nephew's family are able to find some peace over time. Barbie! I had an original Barbie doll with the black and white striped bathing suit when I was a kid. I'm surprised that Barbie is still so popular after all this time, and I am very impressed that you were able to amuse the girls with so many diverse Barbie activities. (It sounds exhausting, to tell you the truth - LOL.) Grief and Barbie... I hope you are going to get some well-deserved rest this week. I thought about you a lot last week.

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  2. I continue to hold all of you in my heart. Grief and Barbie... yes, indeed. (Perhaps that is the best reminder that life will move forward... that some days we might find the bathroom is the drivers seat, but others we can step away and immerse ourselves in flips, gymnastics, climbing trees, swinging, and playing hide and seek!)

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  3. I'm very glad to see you back in this space and to know that you made it through the week and were able to be with Jill when her pain was so fresh. I know the days ahead will continue to be difficult for all of you and I want you to know that I'm always available to listen. As for Barbie, I was not a fan. In fact, I didn't play with dolls at all. My Hannah, on the other day, LOVED Barbie and played with her for hours.

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  4. I'm sure that having you there made such a difference to your sister and your great-nieces. I'm honestly not sure how I feel about a combination driver's seat/bathroom, but it's certainly a novelty that I'm sure was a good distraction! I'll continue to keep your family in my thoughts.

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  5. Oh, I am so sorry for your family's loss. It's so wonderful that you could be with your sister. Peace and love to you all.

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  6. Oh, Bonny, I'm so sorry for your family's loss. It was good you could be there with your sister & family. I'm keeping you all in my thoughts & prayers.

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  7. I'm holding all of you in my heart, Bonny. I'm so sorry your family has had to suffer this devastating loss, but I'm so glad you were able to spend last week with your sister, your nieces . . . and the Barbies. Sending all the love, all the time. XO

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  8. I'm so glad that you were able to drop everything and be where you needed to be. Much love to your family as they grieve.

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  9. I'm so very sorry for your loss.

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  10. Oh Bonny, I'm so sorry for your family's loss ... and glad you could be there to support your sister and those little girls with the Barbie/play. Sending much love.

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  11. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm glad you were able to be their with your sister and her family.

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  12. Oh Bonny. I am so very sorry to read about this. I'm glad you were able to spend the week with your sister and her family. My heart goes out to you all. Such sorrow.

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  13. Keeping you all close in my prayers. And the Barbies...you are a saint. xoxo

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  14. I am so sorry for your family's loss. How wonderful that you could support your sister. Death at such a young age with children involved is so heart wrenching. As for playing Barbies, I never thought of that as a skill like riding a bicycle but I suppose you are right. I do recall the Barbie and clothing that I had has a girl and then my daughter's too. A trip down memory lane.

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  15. How did I miss this post? I am so terribly sorry for your loss, that is much too young.

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