Unfortunately, at least for now, it's difficult for me to think of Jamie before her illness took control of her life. I can only hope that in time, I'll be able to remember everything wonderful we shared. A lifetime of being sisters.
If you knew Jamie, you would know that everything she did was with such incredible detail and meticulousness. And that is how I tried to take care of her. I tried to anticipate all the things she would want, always hurrying to be one step ahead. When she had to go back to the hospital, each time we would move her in with everything that could possibly be taken from home to make her more comfortable, her own sheets, pillows, blankets, foam mattresses, a huge board to work her puzzle on...no schleppage was too great when it came to my sister.
My mother lived with Jamie for months at a time and together we gave Jamie endless love and care. And it was our joy.
Her comforts were of the utmost importance to us and she knew that. I am proud, because as independent as she was, when she was going through this horrific ordeal, she allowed me to take care of her. She trusted me with her life. You can't imagine how many times that scene in the movie, "Terms of Endearment" flashed through my mind. She knew I would never let her have a second of pain if there was anything that I could do to prevent it. A bad nurse, or anyone else who displeased her or us, was out the door in an instant.
Jamie was always so grateful. She told me that so many times throughout these past two years. She felt completely safe and secure with us, knowing we would be the ones to ask the questions that she couldn't, and make the decisions she wouldn't. If something came up, and I wasn't in the room, she would say, "Ask Laurie." That's pretty important coming from your big sister.
It's hard to believe that from such a tragedy could come anything wonderful, but it did. My relationship with John, my nephew was her great gift to me. He will always be my piece of Jamie.