It a brief story that I wrote that I dedicate it In the Memory of my sister.
Growing up with Peggy Lee, I always thought her name was Peggy Ann. It wasn’t until a fifth cousin emailed me our father’s obituary. Reading through dad’s obituaty is when I discovered that my sister’s name was Peggy Lee, not Peggy Ann. I called my younger sister right away. Hey sis, did you know that Peggy’s middle name was Peggy Lee. “Well no she stated. I always thought her middle name was Ann; me too I said. Beth asked; How did you find this out Joy? Well you know our fifth cousin Nettie, yea; she sent me dad’s opituary and when was reading through it, at the end where they list all his children, it Peggy’s name is listed as Peggy Lee.
Isn’t that ironic I said. Yea, because we always knew her as Peggy Ann. “Wow”, we didn’t know our sister as well as we thought we did. I know right Beth said”.
Our sister Peggy Lee was a summer baby boomer. She was born in June 15, 1955. She is older than my sister and I, I fall in the middle sister and fifteen months younger Beth and Peggy Lee are eighteen months differe. Peggy Lee and Beth was more closer though than sister beth and I. It wasn’t until after Peggy Lee lost her battle to cancer that Beth and I started growing close. Growing up with the two sisters I used to be more closer to Beth but as we grow older we grew further and further apart. Never gotten close to Peggy Lee. That is probably because I was in the hospital a lot.
Peggy Lee and Beth were raised by our parents where I was being raised by my grandmother only because our mother had so many children, fifteen exact that she could not find enough time to raise all of us so grandma stepped in to take one of us all of mom’s hands and it happen she chosed me. My siblings and I now got to see each other every day because grandma came over to our home every day except on Sundays. We attended church and Sunday was a relaxing day. “Mom was so more into working than raising her children so when grandma did come over she end watching Peggy Lee, Beth and I. We were more in grandma’s care than our mother’s care. Dad worked every day too, he owned and ran a car lot and worked as a mechanic so we hardly seen him either. When dad did find time to spend with us, it would be just Beth and I. His spending quality time with us would be at the horse races. When we arrived at the races he left Beth and I unattended and go wherever we wanted too as long we stayed on the premises and stayed out of dad’s hair. He given us money and all night we kept our distance so dad could consentrate picking the horses. One night we were coming home and dad lost a good amont of money. He was furious that day that awhile dad was driving home he did not realized or noticed he drove right through four stop sign. Beth and I was fast asleep laying in the back seat and the police officer had to waken us up because they were taken daddy to the police station. We didn’t know what was going on so we started to cry and got very fightened so the police officer explained to my dad, “why he pulled him over. The police officer said, because you have two small children with you I am going to just give you a citation and get you on your way but drive carefully for your both of your daughter’s safety.
Dad was cited and we were back on the road headed home. From where we lived to the drive to the horse races it was a few hours drive. We arrived home safely and I awaken my younger sister so we can head into the house and jumped in our nice warm beds. Whenever we went to the horse races, dad win some and he loose some but we we’re kids, we didn’t know no better. We were about around the ages, eight and nine years old or maybe a bit younger.Our dad was a big gambler, he liked betting on those horses. When he won big money he buys us new bikes anything we wanted and he give us both hush-hush money to not to tell mom. I believe mom was aware of it and knew. Mom just never gotten up the nerve to confront our dad because my dad abused mom on several occassions so mom was afraid of dad so she felt it was easy to keep quiet than start nagging and fussing at him. Peggy Lee, Beth and I grew up around violent environment and we learned to accept it and lived with it. We could do nothing or said anything it would just made matters worse for mom.
Peggy Lee; left home at the age of sixteen years old, ended up getting pregnant to a violent man. She did eventually left him but she dated bad boys. The man she ended up marrying was worse than the first one. Together her husband and her had six children. Because of the violenced in their home; Peggy Lee losted five out of the six children. Her five children that were taken were all placed in foster care and they be placed in one foster home to another. It was sad story. She chose her husband over her children. Peggy Lee first child was a son but not to her husband at the time of her death, he belong to another man and he was her oldest but her second husband raised him as their own and gave him his name.
Our family was unfunctional family. There were a lot of violence and abused and even incest going on. All three youngest children which we were feel we gotten the worse end of the stick. My two siblings and I end up beoming teenage mother’s and runaways. When Peggy Lee ran away, dad didn’t seem to care. He left her ago and that is how she got mixed up with her first and second husband. She had a hard and rough life living with her second husband. He beat her, he was an alocholic an don drugs. She had head trauma’s to the head from her second husband where the end results from the head trauma’s she ended up with a head tumor. I only found out a few months after she lost her battle to Squamous Cell cancer that she had a tumor after her first daughter was born. I was aware she did have seizures but I was not aware what was causing her seizures. Peggy lived with seizures for ten to eleven years. I don’t know exactly how long exact how many years it was, I only know what was told to me. After finding this out that her husband was the caused of her seizures, yes; I gotten very angry and upset. We had our siblings little fissy fits and our disagreements but yet and still we were sisters and we loved each other very much so. We would support each other and have each other back if one of us ever needed each other help. Two years before her passing, she started to make changes in her life and turning her life around. The year before she passed; my husband and I traveled down to visited the younger sister for a few hours and when we finally arrived at her home, my younger sister greeted me at my car. We didn’t even have the car parked yet so I unwind the window down so we can talk and I could hear what she was saying. She invited us in and offered us to have a seat and asked if we would like to have a cold pepsi. Sure sis, we would love one. A few minutes in our visit her phone rang, Beth picked up her phone to answer it and happen to be on the other line was our sister Peggy Lee. The purpose the reason she called, Beth would save her pickle juice for our sister. Peggy Lee was asking Beth when she was going to bring the pickle juice over. “oh sis, Beth said, our sister Joy came down, I ask her and her husband if they could drop it off because we had plans today. Beth asked me, and I answered yes, we could drop it off to her. “Thanks Sis, no problem sis.
We visited our sister’s family for approximately for two others. When our visited was ending, we said our good byes and gave each other our sisterly hugs, said the words, “I love You”! We had a two and half hour drive home so we wanted to drop this pickle juice off to Peggy Lee’s home and visited her for an hour we needed to cut our visited short with Beth. When we arrived at Peggy Lee’s home,Peggy Lee heard our car pulling up so she met us at the car and invitied us in to take a tour in her home. I was fabergasted what I saw. Peggy Lee was so thin, so thin as a pencil. I was really concerned so I asked questions. Sis, I said, is there something that your not telling me; why you are so thin. “I eat she said. It don’t look like it sis. She was so overwhelmed how she finally owned a home to call her own. She was so proud of herself because it was her home, she saved up enough money and used the money she saved towards purchasing her home. When I saw the joy in her voice and seen how happy she was I was so proud of her. She was still having seizures, she was on medication to control her seizures. “Well we visited Peggy Lee and her family for about an hour and I told her we need to start to head home sis, it is getting late and it is a few hours drive for us to get home, so we’re going to have to say our good-byes but just before we say goodbye, here is your pickle juice. We’ll visited again, promise.
We arrived home late. My husband and I was exhaustd and tired, we went directly to bed. We slept in late into the next day. We kept in contact with Beth and I always asked how our sister Peggy Lee was doing. Beth answer would always say, she is okay sis. Peggy Lee didn’t have a phone so to keep updated about her health I had to go through Beth to find out and she kept me posted and updated. A year went by, since our visited to both of the sisters. I knew we needed to make plans to visited them again but before I made those plans I received a phone call from Beth. Joy, Peggy Lee was admitted to the hospital today. Her husband called and said he needed to call the ambulance. “What for? I asked. Peggy Lee is very ill, “What? I asked again. Less said she had a seizure only this seizure was very different from her other ones. She fainted and passed out and he couldn’t get her awake so he called the ambulance. I was planning to visited her the following week before Beth called me but it seems my plans to visited her again was planned sooner. Only this visit was going to be visiting her at the hospital.
January 17,2007, we said our last good-byes to my sister. It was a emotional day. She closed her eyes around 5:00 Pm and took her final breath and she was gone. She fought to the end. Still today on June 15Th, is her birthday every since Peggy Lee passed I light a candle and release balloon to heaven: Happy Birthday Sis!