Looking for answers to life's questions

Two months after my fifth birthday my mother came home from somewhere. I don’t remember her being gone but I do remember her placing the baby in my arms. Somehow in my mind, that baby was a gift for me and she was mine. We were living in a tiny flat above Leo’s market across the street from my father’s family while he was doing a tour of duty in Korea. My sister was already several months old before he ever met her.

Kindergarten school photo.

Our mother had been very ill during her pregnancy. I tried to take care of mom when she was too ill to do the dishes or pick up a bit. A lot of her illness may have been about missing our dad or a lot of homesickness. We left Germany before my sister was born and my father’s family was not particularly pleased that we were part of his life. The rest of her illness was because there was apparently an RH factor involved and my sister needed complete blood transfusions after she was born.

Waiting for delivery

There was also not much in the line of groceries in our house or even in my grandparents’ house for that matter. Times were tough and tight with lots of tension all around but that baby made everything feel better. Of course living above Leo’s market helped a lot. I would smile and be rewarded with a treat or carry up something we needed.

In my best apron taking care of mom

This new baby was mine to care for and love. I learned to feed her and watch her when mom put her out on the porch in her pram for fresh air. Mom said babies needed fresh air no matter the temperature outside. She would be bundled up with only her fingers and face sticking out. I would come home from Kindergarten every day to take care of my baby. My baby sister was my first child.  As she grew up, I made it my responsibility to  keep her safe, entertained and hopefully out of the trouble her curious mind always seemed to find.

Pleased as punch with my baby.

That day began a journey that spanned more than 60 years. We are and have always been each other’s friend and adversary on occasion. No one realized what an adventure her life would take us.

Let the story unfold.

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself

Comments on: "SUZY Q Introduction" (67)

  1. What a lovely start to the tale. So many children begin by resenting a new sibling, but you opened your arms and your heart. Your sister was lucky as well as loved… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Kate. I have many stories written. Just a little spit and polish and they will be ready to go. Photos are the hardest to come by. She always tells her therapists that she was such a mess because she was raised by a 5 year old. 🙂 I just tell her I did my best. Then we laugh.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so happy you’re writing about your sister, Marlene. I really enjoyed this post and the wonderful pictures. Both of you were adorable children. Looking forward to more! xo

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, Marlene this tears at my heart. What a beautiful beginning to the story you’re writing about your sister, and the relationship you share. Take care, my friend and Happy Thanksgiving!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I wish I’d done my make-up after reading this post and not before — my mascara’s run into my eyes and down my cheeks now, so I have to start from scratch….

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean for anyone to be sad. That sweet faced baby gave us all a run for our money. More hair raising tales coming soon. Thanks for stopping by. I’ll try to get the funny tales up soon.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. When I was 5 my mother also brought home a baby girl. Susan or Susi Q. I remember that night so well as there was an awful storm and the power went out while we were eating salmon patties and peas. All these years later and she’s still a baby! lol This is weird, right?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wonderful beginning, Marlene! I can’t wait to learn more. You were always the caregiver I see. Doesn’t surprise me. It’s your hearts joy. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. How lovely. There is a special link between sisters. I am lucky too in that respect, but although she saved my life once (pulling me from an old well I’d fallen into), we did have a very capable mum, so she didn’t have to bring me up.

    Liked by 1 person

    • My sister was a handful and more than all of us could handle together. We are very different kinds of people but we love each other anyway. She has taught me so much about life.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Marlene! This is such a wonderful story. And there will be more to follow? I’m so excited! Happy Thanksgiving.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m happy to see you have been at work and we can now reap the rewards. It is a wonderful way to share your sister with us. And what a beginning!! This is going to be a rich and bumpy ride 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. What a wonderful beautiful story! Keep on writing!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. What a blessing to have such a close sister – someone you have loved and cared for. That’s priceless. I look forward to reading more – so glad for a new post and more to come! Stories like this are so interesting because they illustrate what’s happened in our world in such a personal way. You were in Germany and lived about a market – both things that would help shape your earliest perspectives in life. Enjoyed the read. I also wish you the happiest of Thanksgivings. Sending big hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Cynthia. I appreciate the visit. It has been an interesting ride for both of us. Thanksgiving is going to be fun this year. Pizza and beer. 🙂 No work. 🙂 Hope you have a great one.

      Like

  12. Love this. So moving.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Your words make everything seem perfect while I know it wasn’t, it’s that optimistic view you have. I hope you share this with your sister so she can read how much love you put into words about your love for her.

    Like

    • I will be compiling all the stories and photos into a book for her. We are in a race against time to get it done. She has no doubt that I love her with all my heart. Her daughter will get to understand who she really was and is. I’ll send a more detailed note later. Thanks for your kind words, Lois. Hugs to you and the family.

      Like

  14. I love the picture of you looking after your Mum as well as your sister. There is quite a gap between my two older boys and the youngest, the middle son still really looks out for his baby brother. Lovely memories.

    Like

    • Interesting that it’s the middle son that took on that roll, Cathy. Are they still close? I would think so. Thanks for the visit and have a wonderfilled week.

      Like

  15. I, too, have a sister who I’m very close to so I loved reading this. My sister is closer in age–only 10 months and 3 weeks younger–and my mom dealt with the RH factor problem, too. We lived way out in the country wth few other kids around so my sister was my best friend. And she is still among my best friends today! I’m glad you know the love and warmth of that special connection!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for stopping by Kerry. Our connection is a bit unusual in that I’ve had more of a parental role in her life than a sister role though as with my own daughter, we are now friends as well. Just to have a connection with a sibling is a treasured thing. I’m glad you have one as well. Have a wonderfilled Thanksgiving weekend Kerry.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. It is wonderful Marlene when we have that close bond with our sibling.. And So loved the story and your amazing pictures,
    You really could see how proud and protective you are in that photo with your baby sister..
    Such wonderful memories to share.
    And I know you will continue to be that protective , loving sister..
    Thank you for sharing these lovely excerps from your life..

    Sending love and HUGS my friend xx

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Misty Hopkins said:

    Beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

    Like

  18. Marlene, great pictures and story! I must say that your sister still looks the same, albeit a bit older. I am glad you two have each other! Looking forward to reading more of these adventures … 😉 I hope you are having a good week and a peaceful and quiet Thanksgiving! 🙋

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Danish Mum’s put their babies outside for fresh air in all weather too. Interesting that your Mum also believed this tradition.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It may have been a European thing to put babies outside for fresh air. I do know that at some point the parents went to Denmark on a tiny holiday together but that was after my sister was born. We didn’t get to go. 😦

      Like

      • Yes. Your folks might have got the idea from there or at the very least it reinforced it. It is a shame yo didn’t get to accompany them on their trip but this was often three way with families in the past. Children had little rights or were better to be seen and not heard. Not the way I brought up my own children but a common philosophy in child rearing in times gone by

        Liked by 1 person

      • That was how it was. A vacation from us children could have been a way to save their sanity. 🙂 I never did that but my life was a bit easier. 🙂

        Like

  20. Marlene, you are a terrific story teller. It’s endearing the way you looked after your sister from such a young age and it seems you looked after your mother, too. I hope there was someone there to mother you when you needed it most. We all need that.

    I’m glad you received treats from Leo’s. I’m sure you charmed them all with that smile. That last photo is such a gem. You can see the love in your face, even then. The one of you in the apron is charming too. What a treasure trove of photos.

    I’m looking forward to the next installment, and I’m delighted to hear that this will be bound in a book with your words, these wonderful photos, and the comments that follow.

    Love to you and yours. Wishing you a peaceful Thanksgiving. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Oh, Marlene! You are a wonderful storyteller… and this is the beginning of a very special story! Your photos are real treasures. I’m looking forward to the next chapters as you and your sister grow up together. Heartfelt thanks for sharing your story with us, Marlene! Warmest hugs! ♡

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Lovely, Marlene. A very lovely post. Such an important and loving gift for your sister — and for you, I suspect!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. I loved this post, Marlene, and am looking forward to more. I suspect there are mant parallels with my own childhood; as the eldest of nine, and the next sister more than seven years younger, I was always a second mother. Lucky for me, that suited me just fine! (I’m not so sure it suited the other kids, though LOL) I’m enjoying the photos, too; too bad there are never many from those days. Who had the money for cameras, film and developing?
    Thanks for sharing your stories. I also love that they are about you as well as your sister.
    I hope your Thanksgiving was a good one. Warm hugs to you both. ~ Linne

    Liked by 1 person

    • I forgot to say that I think the practise of putting the baby outside in a pram no matter what the weather was likely European; my Mum did the same with me and her parents were both born in Norway, although they met later in North Dakota. ~ L

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Linne. Glad you enjoyed your visit here. It’s true that our stories are intertwined. Seven years is a bigger difference in age. Our mother was overwhelmed with 4, I can’t imagine 9. Though my father was the oldest of 10. We are lucky to have as many photos as we do from that period of time. You are correct, few could afford a camera or film. Since our father was away so much, photos were taken to send to him. Thanksgiving was quiet. 🙂 Have a great weekend. Hugs to you.

      Like

  24. Marlene, I was so pleasantly surprised to read this piece on your sister. I’ve been out of touch a bit lately and trying to catch up. Will be reading more of your writing in the future. Loved seeing the pictures as well. I agree with others, do keep on writing. It is wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Celine! I too have been so far behind in my reading I’m almost embarrassed to post. I have company for another week and then hope to get back to catching up somewhat.

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Marlene, that photo of you in your apron, caring for your mother, is priceless. I know that this story is about your sister, but even more it is about you, and the two of you together. I look forward to reading more.
    I do hope that Thanksgiving brought you happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Laurie. Yes, it is about the both of us as I’ve been taking care of her, her entire life. Very soon after company leaves, I’ll get back to writing. Thanksgiving was probably quieter here than you had it. just me and my 2 kids. Having pizza. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Oh Marlene! I loved the photos! You are so adorable! And I love that you were the little mother to your baby sister! I was the same way at 3 years old – I took care of my baby too! My sister and I are friendly but it’s an interesting relationship. I’m glad you have eachother! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s funny how early we learn to mother. Our relationship has had it’s moments through time. now that ours is coming to an end, we are making sure to stay close friends. I’m glad we have each other too.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. I love this, Marlene! In so many ways it reminds me of my relationship with my younger sister. I hope you had a super beautiful Christmas and now as the year is coming to its end (so hard for me to believe) I hope that 2018 has lots of love and wonderful blessings for you. ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, Lorrie. I think most of us have one person in the family that qualifies as a character in some way. I hope for many good things in the next year for you as well. This last one was a bugger and I’m glad it’s over. I seem to do better with even years. I hope to get more writing done this year. Barely kept up last year.

      Like

      • I know exactly what you mean, Marlene. I have so many projects in my head and in various states of completion and yet I felt my presence here was minimal. And that is not because I don’t love it here…I do! And the love and support I found here has been amazing. Life just got complicated in a huge way. It is funny how you said you do better in even years…I never really thought about that and off the top of my head…I think I can say the same!
        So, here’s to this New EVEN Year…and all the wonderful things in it!!
        Much love to you 💜💜

        Liked by 1 person

RIGHT FROM YOUR HEART

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: