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Jumping Rope After Mass

Children weren’t photographed relentlessly when we were growing up, but these early snapshots of my sister capture her essence. She is gone 25 years today. The photos of us together also speak to my yearning.

Mary fashion show

As a toddler, Mary starred in a department store fashion show in Lexington, Ky., where we grew up. Modeling a snow suit with leggings, she looks like she is about to step gingerly from the stage, led by a store employee. Mary’s very early interest in couture endured throughout her 33 years—she always dressed with creativity and flair.

Easter finery

We are decked out in spring coats, ready for Mass. It looks like we have fresh pixie haircuts, too.

Mary leaping

Mary in mid-air, getting in a few rounds of jump rope after Mass, probably restless from sitting through all those dominus vobiscums and recitations of the Pope’s phone number, et cum spiritu tuo.  (You had to have gone to Catholic school to get that joke.)

MTC and KTC holding hands on beach

My grandmother took this one at Avon-by-the-Sea, N.J., in 1964.  The bathing caps were undoubtedly Nana’s idea—she worried that the chilly Atlantic would harm our ears! Rifling through old photos brings me to tears every time, but I wept the most when I came across this one. It’s the only one that shows Mary and me clasping hands.

RIP my dear.

About treacycolbert

I make my living by writing about health care. I've always written about life's chastening effect, but just as a way of sorting it out for myself. After years of doing this and keeping these essays quiet, I decided to put some of these impressions out there on this blog. Thanks for reading, and let me know what you think.

6 responses »

  1. What a beautiful, loving tribute to your sister. This brought me to tears, too. I’m sure that Mary is smiling down on you, so proud of her little sister. I’m thinking about you today, Treacy.

  2. What a beautiful memory walk for Mary. What a beautiful testament to your live for your sister. My thoughts and prayers are with you today.

  3. What sweet and loving memories you have to carry you through, Treac. The greater the love though, the greater the sadness in their absence. My heart is with you today.

  4. Thanks for reminding me how lucky I am to have my sister with me still. Love these photos.


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