Friday, August 11, 2017

My New Neighbor Upstairs

I wished my sister a good night and headed downstairs to my bedroom. She was right. This would have made mom happy.

It has been a half century since we lived together in that red brick house, our bedrooms next to each other, our parents across the hall. It was an idyllic time, the house filled with love and respect, my sister always there to protect me.

We have remained close over these many years, speaking virtually every day. But what serendipity brought us physically to the same place, her apartment unit directly above mine? Is it mere coincidence that my mother in law lives on the same floor as my sister and one of my oldest and closest friends resides in the apartment next to me? How could timing and circumstance have collided so often to create an attachment to so many close to me not only emotionally but now geographically?

My sister and I have shared the loss of our dad, far too early and very recently, the loss of our mom, in some ways, far too late. We have shared the weddings, the births, the hard days and those we wished to cling to forever. But I know we never envisioned that we would, at this point in life, be sharing laundry detergent.

My wife and I have a standing dinner invitation with her mom each Tuesday. We will now be walking right past the door to my sister's apartment on the way down the hall. I don't know if schedules will permit us to set aside another evening for bonding with my sister and our brother in law or if the Tuesday night enclave will occasionally expand to include them. But it is just amazing to think this possibility exists.

Our most recent upstairs neighbors were an older, quiet couple. I never recall hearing any noise emanating from within their unit. And while I have a hard time recalling much of anything from a half century past, I do remember my sister being forever kind, considerate and attentive to my needs. I now take this opportunity to remind her that I am often in bed by 8:30 so if she could turn the TV down after that and maybe walk in slippers it would be  greatly appreciated.

Mom, I promise we will do our best to continue to make you happy that we ended up together again, brother and sister. But can you tell her not to take my key away, so I can get some of that delicious crumb cake whenever I am hungry?


Eileen said...

such a sweet post, you are so lucky to have such a strong bond to your sister

Pam said...

Just like the Jewish Waltons... an apartment version... Good night Robert Boy...

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

Another great piece!


Anonymous said...

Loved it!