Monday, October 25, 2010
You can continue to expect a post about each person that I’m close to in my life, and today I want to write about my big sis – Raylene. Rahleeeene Ricketts…
She is five years older than me and when my parents got divorced she ended up staying with my dad. I remember as a little girl I thought she was so cool (and still do). When we look at letters we used to write each other, we crack up. I think these letters began when I was eight-years old and probably went until I was eleven or so. First of all, I could not spell and obviously had no idea what grammar was and second, I would write things like OZZY RULES, LED ZEPPELIN #1, and BLACK SABBATH ROCKS! I didn’t even know their music; I just knew she had their albums. Still cracks me up to this day.
I think as a little girl you always look up to your older sisters. You watch what they do, how they dress, what they like, etc. The one thing that always stood out to me about Raylene (beside her rock style ways) was her deep compassion. She was and is always so thoughtful and giving. If it’s something she has and you need it, it’s yours. It could be clothes, money, advice, whatever it is, she’s right there.
When my dad got diagnosed with a brain tumor, she essentially never left his side. She would visit him often and even towards the very end of his life, she was always sitting right beside his bed. She was always there. Each sister dealt with it in their own way, and there is no right or a wrong, but when I think about how she was right there up until the bitter end; it just reminds me of the person she really is.
You will never hear her talk about who she is or boast about what she does because it’s simply not her. Everything is done with a quiet confidence and a certain ease. She likes to laugh and have fun and she’s not the type to get into any drama (unlike me) she just keeps to herself. However, she is a LEO so do not make the mistake of crossing her. Leo’s are the monarch's among humans as the lion is king of beasts. She may be wise, independent, and thoughtful but don’t forget she is very courageous and she can bite! That’s also the Italian in her too! :)
Another thing that I admire is how people attract to her. We have a joke in the family and we always say…Everyone loves Raylene! Kids love her, animals love her and even complete strangers love her. It’s funny, no matter where she goes people adore her and they always talk to her. Her energy is so welcoming and nurturing and I think people sense that instantly.
After a complicated history she finally gave birth to her son, Kaden. I was lucky enough to witness that, but also a bit traumatized. She was too far along to get an epidural and she had to have him without any drugs. Not sure I will ever forget the look of pain on her face, or even how brave she was. I would have been crying or punching people if I was in that situation, yet the way she handled it was such a testament to her inner strength. Every excruciating push led to this beautiful soul and big shining light – everyone LOVES him! She is such a wonderful mommy and she always has a special connection to all children –that inspires me the most about her. I think she should have more babies, adopt or be around children all of the time - she has the power to shape and enrich any young life!
I wrote a poem about her years ago and it’s still her today…
What is in that name so sweet?
A person who listens and is so easy to greet
Everyone loves her and calls her by name
Touched by her spirit, you won’t feel the same
She brings laughs and smiles and cheer so bright
Walks into the room and is surrounded by light
She shows her love by giving and sharing
Her passionate nature is nothing but caring
She is wise and quiet and her thoughts she protects
And only uses herself to learn and regret
She stood on her own and I admire her will
The older sister role she will entirely fill
Her strength and sadness still lies within
And that is her choice, not a gift or a sin
She may have felt alone, or had some empty years
Now I’m so grateful she knows her family is there
She will bring your laughter straight into tears
She will listen and help you with your fears
She has the power to repair and to guard
Raylene is a flower in nature’s magical yard