FOOTPRINTS IN THE SAND
Tears rolled down my face as I tried to smile. Prolonging the dreaded good-bye, I kept busy organizing the small stuff in her new home. Her home with out me. It was one of those moments I anticipated but would not accept the reality until the time finally came. I had never been good with good-byes. An hour later, my dad looked at me and I knew this time we were leaving. I had given her a hug without looking at her and we whispered I love you’s to each other. She was having a hard enough time leaving everything behind so I wanted to stay strong for her. I wanted to stay. Walking from that dorm room felt like I was saying good-bye to my very best friend. As I reached the car and we drove off I began to cry, trying hard not to let my dad see. I did not want to talk about it.
Through life, many people turn away but family is always there. When you are away from the ones that mean the most to you, it is then when you realize how much they mean to you. Just like the old saying goes, “absence makes the heart grow fonder”. I found this saying to be true when my oldest and only sister moved away for the first time to go to college.
Losing one mom was hard enough but when I had to say goodbye to my second I thought I was going to die. On March 12, 1992 my mother passed away of acute leukemia and my older sister moved up in the family tree. She became my mother, my sister, and my best friend. When she left, it was hard to imagine life without her around. We seem to be the perfect age apart to completely understand each other. She is the person who keeps me going. She is my conscience and role model. She teaches me everyday to live and learn and always try my best. My friends and father all mean so much to me but whenever anything goes wrong my very first reaction is “What will Allison think? What would she say?”
In 1936, many say that 14 year-old Mary Stevenson wrote the poem FOOTPRINTS IN THE SAND. She claimed that God gave her the words while she just pushed the pencil. But many also say that Margaret Fishback Powers was the author. Every time I read the old poem it makes me smile and cry both from happiness. I actually feel guilty for saying that Allison was the first person that I thought of after reading it. It is not only about my faith to God; it is about my faith of family and friends. The poem reminds me of the care and love that she gives. I noticed that during all the times I thought that she was not there she always was, with open arms. “You promised me, Lord, that if I followed you, you would walk with me always.” (Footprints 1). I have been through many hard times and have done plenty of things that I regret but my sister has not once looked down on me because of it. She loves me for who I am and loves me no matter what I do. But when she is comforting and consoling me all my troubles seem to disappear.
The poem is one of the most inspirational and heartwarming poems I have ever read. As the poem states, people often look first towards the negative side of things: “Why, when I needed you most, you have not been there for me?” (Footprints 1) But they soon realize that other people are not always deceiving and they do go out of their way for others. I have, many times, always assumed the worst but my sister has always proven me wrong.
A week later, the night before school started I called her crying. I do not know how she could even understand me because I was so hysterical. I’m certain that I didn’t make any sense. She paused and cried out “I’ve been waiting for this call,” like any mom would do. I can picture her quoting the famous words from the poem and speaking to me: “My precious child, I love you and would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.” (Footprints 1)
I have told her everything ever since. It makes me question everything I take for granted. For fourteen years I had my very own psychologist, tutor, and best friend right down the hall and I did not even realize it. It turned out for the best though. Allison and I have never been as close as we are today. But I will never take our relationship or any other relationship for granted again.