I have written, at length, about my relationship with my now disowned sister-but words will never portray the betrayal, the loss, the shock. Back in the day, in our twenties, we did everything together. I took her with me to Pittsburgh, my ex-husband’s home town, on several occasions, and there were great times, amazing times-but that is another story for another day.
It’s hard to explain what it’s like to find out someone as close as a sibling is a psychopath. I look back constantly, why, why, why? There were so many red flags, but my self esteem was in the toilet, and she used everything that was true and decent, my immense love for my family, my spirituality-she used it against me.
“Nothing matters to you more than family, does it Michele?,” she asked one rainy morning, ten or so years ago. Of course not, I told her. Family means everything, all we have in this world are each other, mom and dad are gone and we have to take care of the family we have left.
She took this information, digested it, and used it against me for ten years straight. My husband loved our nieces and nephew-he constantly asked why we didn’t just drive down to Exton, surprise them. Back then, he didn’t understand the machinations of her twisted mind. I knew she was punishing me, but where was the crime?
New York is incredibly important to me. I was born in Utica, my grandparents and cousins, aunts and uncles-they were all in upstate New York. My father, the only person in our family who graduated college, attended St. Lawrence University- and that is where I will spread his ashes in September, standing next to my husband, my familia, who has been hurt and victimized as well, at the hands of her insanity.
Love is patient. Love is kind. Love does not envy or boast. Love, in all its messiness and madness, well, love never fails.
In gratitude and remembrance of Stephen James Elkins. My friend, my partner in crime, my father. It’s hell here without you daddy, see you on the other side.