I have been thinking about today for a few weeks. I was trying to decide how to properly honor the day, and I still have not figured out exactly how to do that. My oldest sister died three years ago today. It is hard to decide how I feel. Even now the words are being typed choppily one at a time.
Three years ago my dad called me and asked me to come home from where I was playing with my friends. He didn’t scream or yell, he just quietly asked me to come home right away. The whole drive home I was talking, crying, and praying out loud. I will never forget the things I said and felt. When I walked in the front door I was expecting pandemonium but it was calm, unusually calm. My dad told me to bring my four younger brothers into the family room and as I rounded them up with the tears rolling down my face they asked me what was wrong. I didn’t know. My dad sat down with us and told us that my oldest sister Rachael was “missing.” At first I thought kidnapped because I knew she was in
My grandma said, "Rachael did not die because of her goodness. Rachael lives because of her goodness." A third cousin said, "If there ever was a model of kindness, of selflessness, of sweetness and faith, it's her."
I have so many memories of Rachael. She was such a good person and included everyone in everything she did. I have written down some memories:
- her acrogymnastics routine where she would bow and bow until Bruce came out, threw her over his shoulder, and walked off the stage with her kicking
- playing in the foam pit during her gymnastics practices
- how her hair was everywhere! Especially on the shower walls
- Sonic trips
- how she didn't believe she needed a curfew when she came home from college, and my parents couldn't make her
- how she always told me to call her once I had my first kiss and she would answer the phone and say, "What's his name?"
- she was always dancing and could make even the dorkiest move look amazing
- I didn't give her a hug the morning before she left for California because I did not want to wake her up (Michelle said this is probably good because Rachael was not a morning person)
- her love for seven layer dip
- how we always teased her that she would drown while trying to swim to the edge of the dive tank (everyone else in my family was on the swim team in high school and she was a diver)
- when she taught me how to play Egyptian Rat Screw in Canada
- when she told me she had her first kiss and I said, "That's okay, as long as it wasn't Calvin." And then she laughed. Guess who!
- when she got home from a three week vacation to Scotland, I followed her out to the garage and caught her talking to her truck. She had missed it :-)
- her loud, adorable, contagious laugh
- when we found bugs in the broccoli
- showing her my cheerleading dance after auditions and how she taught me to move my shoulders
- dashboard drummin'
- going with her to the Nutcracker and then Bahama Bucks
- Spice Girls, They Might Be Giants, Weird Al, Mariah Carey on cassette tape, Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You"
- riding bikes to Smitty's
- asking for directions to go down the river
- macarena with Seth in the family room
- "And I'm in the Relief Society"
- the crazy guy at Larada's who kept following us around!
- the Christmas when she gave Michelle $20 and Michelle gave her $20
- when I went with Mom to get Rachael's name embossed on her scriptures and we forgot to ask them to leave room for a married name...
- when we went to see President Hinckley speak at the BYU devotional
- when she called me and said, "Guess what today is?!" I said, "Umm, your half birthday?" Yep. She knew I liked half birthdays. I got her a package of all mini bathroom stuff. I got it back a month later...
- letting the wind hold us up on the ferry in Canada
Rachael really changed me; the way I look at life and the way I enjoy life. I love you, Rachael.