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Thursday, March 11, 2010

My sister

My sister is six years younger than me. I can remember when my mom told us she was going to have a baby, how scared I was that she would love it more than Tyler and me because this baby had a different father and how much I wanted a sister instead of another brother. Back then, moms didn't find out what they were having. Ultrasounds just weren't good enough to give that much detail.

The night she was born, my granny announced she was a girl named Erin Suzanne. However, my stepfather teased us and told us that it was a boy. Me, in all my six-year-old know-it-allness, said, "Uh-uh, granny already told us it was a girl. You can't trick us. I finally have a sister."

Don't get me wrong. I loved my brother. I still do. In fact, because we share a father, I often felt closer to him growing up than I did anyone. A lot of times, I felt like it was he and I against the world, but there was something different about Erin. The whole time momma was in the hospital, I was sad. They didn't let kids visit back then, and I missed my momma. I also wanted to see my baby sister. When they came home from the hospital and I looked at her, I thought she was my baby. I even picked her up out of the crib and walked into the living room with her.

Erin was overweight as a child. Whenever anyone put her down, I stood up for her. I tried to be her protector in every way that I could. I felt like it was my job to do that for her and my brother. She eventually grew up and lost the weight and became a beautiful girl. Up until a few months ago, she still was. I was so proud of how pretty she was, and I wished I could be as pretty as she is.

One thing about her is that she has never had the best taste in men. She's made some pretty lousy choices over the years. Her first boyfriend beat her and caused her to try to commit suicide. We got her away from him; I got her a job at the newspaper, where she did pretty well. Her first husband wasn't a terrible guy; he just wasn't right for her and they divorced. She then got pregnant by a man who dumped her as soon as he found out she was expecting. Since having my nephew, she has dated off and on, but she hadn't really gotten serious about anyone, until last September.

A former co-worker introduced her to this guy. He hasn't had a job since they've been dating. He has had two DUIs. He has at least two children by two different women, and there may be more children out there because his son talked about more brothers and sisters that he had. He just wasn't any good for her. We had hoped the relationship would fizzle out. Instead, in January, we learned she had married him in November, about a week before Ella was born. They didn't tell anyone. I think she knew none of us would approve. The night I found out, I texted her and said that I would never say anything about him again but I had to know if she had totally lost her mind. When I asked her why she married him, she said she had her reasons, nothing about love, nothing about how good he was to her or Miller, nothing like that at all.

Since then, we've all noticed how she has gone downhill in regards to her looks. She always made sure her hair was perfect and beautiful. The last few times I've seen her it was scraggly and thrown up in a messy ponytail. Erin liked pretty clothes, too. She borrowed some money from me a few weeks ago, and that day, she had on flip flops, holey jeans and a holey beer T-shirt. Tessa even commented that she had never seen Erin look that way before. Erin also was very good about applying make-up. She knew exactly how to do it so she looked nice. She has stopped wearing it, and I would say she's lost about 30 pounds. She just looks bad. I figured he was being mean to her or bringing her down, but I never suspected the truth.

Last week, I went to visit my aunt who lives across the street. She told me she had to tell me something. Erin was arrested on meth charges. They had been investigating her and her husband since last year and had finally gathered enough evidence to indict her. She was arrested for promotion of meth, meaning she purchased the items needed to make it and sold them to the people who make it. I'm pretty sure her husband makes it, though, because he told me in a text that he had never cooked it around his kids. This makes me think he has made it, just not around them. He also told me he warned Erin of the risks of it before they started. Erin was also gotten for possession of schedule 2 drug, which was meth. She told the police officer and my mom that she couldn't pass a drug test. She now insists that she isn't addicted, and she's only done it once. I don't believe it.

She goes to court tomorrow. I am scared to death for her. Both charges can bring a sentence of two to four years in prison. Erin thinks she'll get by with a slap on the wrist, because she's never been in trouble before. I talked to a friend of mine who used to be a crime reporter, and my mom talked to her pastor who is a police officer. Both have said that when they do a drug bust like this one they usually throw the book at the people who are arrested. The thought of her being in jail kills me. I am scared for her, for her little boy who is only two and has been staying with my parents since Erin was arrested, and for my parents, one of whom is 65 and the other 59 and shouldn't be raising a toddler.

I know she needs to be punished, and I hope she is. I hope it isn't with jail time, but I am so afraid that it will be. I do hope, though, that her husband gets loads of jail time, to get him far, far away from her. I realize she is a grown woman, fully capable of making her own decisions. However, she is 26 years old and had never done anything like this before she met him, so I do place some of the blame on him. I also feel like I should have seen this coming, that I should have been able to fix it somehow. I know logically that I can't.

Brian and I have discussed it, and if need be, we will take my nephew to raise until she's out of jail. I love the little fellow, and I don't want to see him go into foster care, especially since grandparents have no rights in Tennessee. My brother and his wife are also willing to take him if they need to. Hopefully, he won't have to worry about having a home. I just hope it doesn't come down to that.


JenJen said...

Oh Tamara, I am so sorry! I would tend to agree with the crime reporter and your mom's pastor that if the cops put this much work into the case that they're not just going to let her go with a slap on the wrist...I would prepare for the worse but hope for the best :( Meth is such a huge problem accross this country and it destroys so many lives! Ugh, I just feels so bad for you because I have a younger sister and I would be destroyed if something like this were happening to her wether she got herself in this predicament or not....((HUGS))

Reese said...

So sorry to hear about your sister. This damn Meth problem---I am sorry it has found your family.

{{Big Hugs!}}