My twin sister. <3 09.05.1988 - 01.02.2010 <3
I don’t know if this is going to help or hurt me but currently I need to tell somebody. So, thanks in advance for reading our story.
Today is January 2nd, 20ll. It’s been two years since my twin sister passed away. We were born prematurely and through our life she’s always had problems. When we were little she got sick, and I’m not a doctor so I can’t explain how things happened…she had a SIDS episode, and actually started to breathe again on her own. The damage was already done by then and she was mentally impaired.
My parents were unable to take care of her and they decided to put her in a home. Growing up I didn’t understand Through our lifetime we lived in different states. People don’t understand how I can possibly love somebody so much that was never around and how I can miss her as much as I do.. I loved her way before anyone else got the chance to, we are twins. We were made to love each other first I wished with everything that I had her in my life. I prayed that she knew me and knew that I love her more than anything in the world. I tried in my own way to keep in contact when I was old enough to do so, in order to know what was going on. In late December something was just very wrong and I knew it. I needed to be there, it was absolutely crucial that I get to my sister. Maybe I just knew that it wasn’t going to be okay this time. She was in and out of the hospital all the time…
When I finally got off the plane and to the hospital to see her I afraid. I hadn’t seen my sister since I was maybe 12 so it had been years and I finally got to be reunited with her again. I had to wear a gown and gloves because she was so sick I cant tell you how precious those moments are to me now. I wish I could still be in that room holding her hand and telling her how much I love her and telling her 21 years worth of stories and things about our family and the people that I knew that she’d never meet. I really couldn’t believe that I was there and with her.
I told her that whatever she chose to do, id be there through it all. I told her how much I love her. And that I knew she was strong.. if she wanted to fight, I’d fight with her. But if she couldn’t take anymore, and this was it, that that’s okay too. And I’d be there for her through it either way.
It was just after Christmas I want to say it was like, the 26th or 27th that I got to her. She was in the hospital on Christmas but I didn’t know yet.
After I saw her the doctors and her guardians set up a meeting and let me attend it so that I could ask questions and find out whatever I wanted to. They told me she was having seizures and that she probably would never wake up again. And they were discussing options. Hospice, A meeting I couldn’t get through without crying like a baby. 21 years old and I cried in a room full of strangers. They signed a dnr dni on her. There was nothing I could do about it. (do not resuscitate/ do not intubate) but they would give her oxygen… that means that for as long as she was breathing on her own and able to draw in the oxygen they would let her at least have that much. But no life support.
On January 1st ended up just not going back to the house. A doctor was in and out and they were explaining things to me and everything happened so fast. I spent the night with her that night.
Our biological mother came up from sc to the hospital which is in concord, new Hampshire. She drove up there and she stayed for an hourish. We’d requested that she not take pictures of my sister. She did... with her oxygen mask and everything still on and the tubes and machines. And instead of staying with her daughters, she left. The breathing is what still wakes me up at night. The oxygen she was drawing just had this very scary sound to it and she was obviously struggling to breathe. It was an absolute nightmare and every breath literally wrenched at my heart.
That night I talked to her and cried to her and everything. I really wanted her to know how much we all loved her. At some point in the night when they were doing some kind of test on her I found myself at the hospital chapel sobbing my heart out to god to please help us.
On January 2nd in the morning a doctor came.. the night before I think a pastor came and prayed and someone gave me a grief package and I don’t know.. it was just all crazy. A pulmonologist came in to explain to me what would happen that day. At some point the doctors and people decided to let her have a sort of palliative care or something. They’d slowly take her off the oxygen and give her morphine so she wasn’t in any pain, and they stopped all her medicine except the seizure medicine..
The doctor would come in and give her morphine first and then take her oxygen down a notch. They left this up to me. They would do it either way.. but they let it be on my time. I know that doctor came in at least twice to ask me if I was ready.
Was I ready to say yes, it’s okay to take my sisters oxygen away? Yes it’s okay to let her suffocate to death, no problem? Of course it wasn’t okay. The lady came once and gave her the morphine and I held on to my twins hand and by this time it didn’t matter. I took the gloves off and I got in bed with her. I wasn’t going to let her die all by herself; I needed to let her know I was there. When they lowered the oxygen for the first time I felt it. I know its probably in my head but I literally felt like I was suffocating.
The doctors explained to me what was going on and they promised me that she wouldn’t feel like she was suffering but I feel like I let them suffocate her and that guilt still hasn’t gone away. Just because she wasn’t in pain doesn’t mean that wasn’t what happened. If she wasn’t being suffocated she wouldn’t have needed the oxygen in the first place.. but of course I’m not a doctor so.. what the heck do I know?
When they took her oxygen down the second time I’d been there for the morphine but my reaction to taking the oxygen was just so bad that I couldn’t handle it again. During the entire process I had my laptop propped up on my sisters’ bed with us, and I was playing her my favorite music and talking to her and telling her it’d be okay. The grief book said that was something you could do.. Just reassure them and sing to them. I was scared and so I played music.. Some country and some Praise songs.. Because at that moment we needed God for sure. And surprisingly as much pain as there was I did find some peace with the music and I really hope that it soothed her too. I just know that some of the songs I played I just cried the entire time, I couldn’t keep it together.
The nurse came in one last time to take the oxygen down again. And I begged her to stop at that point. I don’t know why, I just knew it was time to stop. She asked me I wanted her to have morphine, and I made sure that they were sure she wasn’t in any pain without it, and I said no to that too. And at some point just before 10 pm I turned on Phil Collins’ song from Tarzan,”You’ll be in my heart” I cuddled up to my sister and held her tight and shortly after the song ended she took her last breath.
To be honest I didn’t handle her last breath that well. The oxygen was still forcing air into her lungs so when I thought she’d passed she ‘breathed’ again and I completely lost control for a moment there…the next few days were a blur of making preparations for her memorial service. I signed her death thing. I picked out her urn. I personalized it, the plaque on the urn says “This bond between us can’t be broken” It’s a line from the song I mentioned before.. it fit perfectly. My biological mother didn’t show up for the service but my dad my step mom and my grandma and grandpa drove from Ohio to come to the service. They don’t know it but that meant everything to me that they came for us.
I still keep in contact with the family that took care of my sister. Now I’m struggling to get through certain days. Our birthday is hard. And today is hard. And any day in between that I cant get her off my mind.. I just don’t know how to handle what I’m going through. I know its been two years now and I should be okay but I started crying over cupcakes two days ago and here I am today and I feel like my heart is broken all over again as if I just lost her a few minutes ago not two years ago…Does it ever get easier? This loss is just insane to me.