I went to visit an old cathedral in Germany more than two weeks ago. But this isn't about that. I have a story that also has a cathedral in it but in a much smaller town. I have thought about it for months now and every single time I remember it, the story is always how it was.
There used to be two little girls standing right outside the cathedral every afternoon after school. They stood there to get a ride back home, which was a little too far away from town. The younger girl is almost a toddler but she is robust while the elder sister is skinny with her long black hair that flew in the wind as she ran and held her sister by the hand and never letting go of her.
Back home was a sick man who could barely raise his arns. His legs were always suspended on the ground and useless for walking. He waited for his little daughters everday as they came home from school while his wife stayed out late to help find a living. In a corner, a little clueless boy plays with his sisters' barbie dolls not knowing if everbody approved of it. The sick man disliked it but nonetheless loved his son.
When the girls arrived, they all played with their little brother, had a talk with daddy and then get tucked by mommy to sleep. Brother slept in mommy and daddy's room while the sisters in another.
One morning they all woke up with the stars still up in the sky. Daddy was sitting very still. His mouth was open but silent. His chest was not beating. The skinny girl with long black hair walked out to the front porch and sat and cried a river. Then she looked over the horizon. Her eyes couldn't stop looking because it was endless. She didn't understand what she saw. But now, in some way, she does.
I can still remember the cathedral and the long ride home. I remember looking after my six-year old sister as if I was an adult. My concerns then were as petty as how I should order pork barbeque on a stick and hot soup so my sister and I would enjoy a good hot lunch at a cafeteria across school.
Whenever life feels impossible, I try to remember how hard it already was. To my eight-year old self, nothing else mattered but keeping my loved ones safe and happy.