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Marty's "Living life in chapters" A self development blog: Short Story Competition

Marty's "Living life in chapters" A self development blog

Monday, September 25, 2006

Short Story Competition

Short Story for charity.

“Where to begin…I shall begin in those years that left their calling card in the things we had, which were battered and familiar; in what we believed, which was reassuring and unchanging; and in what we said, how we felt, and how we treated one another”…

Harry lay on his bed absorbing the news he had received by phone. It was the news he had been dreading for so many years now. The news that mother had finally passed away and was at peace. Now there would be the plans for the funeral. Harry knew the demons he was going to face. The inevitable meeting of the rest of the family, the most difficult part would be meeting her, his sister Maureen. Harry resolved to write to Maureen this very day. It was going to be tough and challenging, but it needed to be done. Harry knew this could not go on for ever. At 50, being the youngest of the family by far Harry always felt he was the baby of the family and needed resolution with Maureen. Having struggled with the first few lines of this letter and after some thought, Harry got up, went to his bureau and continued with this heartfelt letter.

"I knew you as a different person then. I respected and trusted you, willing to learn from

what I perceived to be your wisdom. I was, after all, a child. I look back now and feel hurt that you didn’t love me in the way mother did. I wonder, did I not meet you expectations? Did I not fulfill your dreams? Was I just second best to what you wanted? Is it because I was not the little sister that you desired?

Now that we are so much older with so much more life experience behind us, I look back and wonder about our relationship as siblings and how much closer we might have been. How I have contributed towards our lack of contact over so many years simply because of my pride. I was your little brother, but now I am an adult. On a social and emotional level can we now be equals?

You hurt me Maureen. I remember how you scolded me at the breakfast table with hurtful words. I remember how you struck my wrist because I was unable to hold the spoon in the way you wished. I never meant you any harm. I was a child who needed gentle encouragement and love. You excluded me and ignored me in so many ways. You frightened me with your moods. I felt a burden upon you. You have never treated me as the adult I have become. I’ve learned my maturity elsewhere, but there is a part of me that wishes I could have learned it with you. Paradoxically I have become bitter and angry as I came into adulthood. I’ve been spiteful in my rejection of you in so many ways and these are feelings that I have owned. Have you noticed this or has it just passed you by? I wish we could have been closer. I wish you knew that I loved you Maureen and that all I wanted was to be accepted by you. I wish that you could have chosen to share in the love for my children as I did for yours. I realize now, that I have hurt you in so many ways.

I do love you sister and I forgive you for the past. I hope and pray that you can forgive me too. I want to know the real you. I want to see the kindness I know you have deep down. We can share hopes and dreams even now. I’ve seen where you have been hurt too, and I know I’ve very likely missed other hurtful times. I would have liked to have been there for you and supported you if you had let me. Can you forgive me sister, for my anger and bitterness? Can we be friends and companions? Would you like to really meet my children? I would be honored if you could. It is possible, I believe Maureen that we can build a relationship that we never knew we had. I have learned that God loves all of us unconditionally and that it would bring great joy to Him when we come to resolution and acceptance. Are you ready to make the step beyond this perceived boundary and outside our comfort zone? I know I am."

Dorothy’s funeral took place some 2 weeks later. The whole family was there as well as many family friends. Harry spent much of that morning at the Crematorium avoiding Maureen and busying himself with talking to all the friends of mother and father. Getting through the ceremony and wishing final goodbyes to mother was something he needed to do first before he could contemplate facing Maureen. The music played, the tears flowed and the curtains closed.

Returning to his parents house afterwards, Harry continued to talk with folk and thank them for their kindness until it all became too much and he retired to the extended back garden behind the fence leading to father’s vegetable garden. Harry sat at the bench and wept like never before, alone in his own thoughts. Momentarily, Harry became aware of a presence near to him. Wiping those tears away from his face, he saw in the distance Maureen walking toward him and made eye contact with her for the first time that day……

09:38PM (PDT)


(20 total)

a touching story.


Thursday 21 September 2006 - 06:46PM (BST)

This is an amazing story. As is the case with your posts, it's so powerful and heartfelt. You never fail to go to the heart of the matter and touch on real issues that are in everybody's lives.

Thanks for writing this.

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 01:50PM (EDT)

One feels sad about what these siblings missed for no real reason. I might have wanted to meet Maureen as more or a person and not only a mute shadow, but still the story gets through. Love, EC

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 07:54PM (CEST)

I loved the story very heartfelt, I always love to read your stories be they real or fictional.
I love the way the story ends ...with a beginning... of hope towards the reunion of the siblings. Loved it Marty.xx

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 07:02PM (BST)

Great choice of music Marty. There are not enough classical pieces written for guitar. The main theme of the piece always reminds me of Mexico for some reason.
Can't add anything new to what the others have already said about the story. Hope you're feeling a little better now. Had any more thoughts on moving on, job-wise?

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 07:27PM (BST)

very nice Marty....The siblings conflicts....

Friday 22 September 2006 - 12:11AM (IST)

I can't add to the others except to say thank you for writing it! Excellent capture and description of emotion.

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 08:35PM (BST)

Nice story Marty, I'm glad to see in your other blogs that your feeling a little better and I think its great that your gonna get a little counselling, good luck mate.

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 10:40PM (BST)

loved the story Marty

A simple gesture can truly have an amazing effect on the one who needs it.

Friday 22 September 2006 - 05:46AM (WST)

I loved it?? You have a way with words????

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 10:39PM (ADT)

I think that type of letter is what I need to write to my daughter-in-law who really dislikes me. It really takes guts to write a letter like that. I like your story, but it sounds as if it is experience not just imagination.

Thursday 21 September 2006 - 07:00PM (PDT)

Marty, i appreciate the way you express yourself when you wrote,your story can get the readers enlighted on something as you may hope,that's fantastic!Hope you will bring us more good writings.

Friday 22 September 2006 - 03:17PM (CST)

That is so beautiful! You truly have a gift for writing!

Friday 22 September 2006 - 11:10AM (EEST)

Wow. That story made me feel the discomfort you feel when you're confronting something you'd rather avoid. I love the way it ends at a funeral, but its really a new beginning. Brilliant.

Friday 22 September 2006 - 02:37PM (BST)

A touching story on a theme that most people can identify only too well with. Thank you for taking part in this great charity drive!

Tuesday 26 September 2006 - 02:50PM (EST)

I identified with this story on so many levels many of us feel we never measure up to others expectations you have done a wonderful job of capturing that

Tuesday 26 September 2006 - 12:40AM (CDT)

Terrific, Marty! How sad when there is conflict within families and what opportunities we miss out on!! This is a beautiful song, too. I know it from Il Divo's Ancora album and found it extremely moving...

Monday 25 September 2006 - 11:36PM (PDT)

MArty..your story touched a nerve in me.. because I have seen with my own eyes sibling rivalry and its effects and it is really sad when that goes unsolved.. truly touching :)

Tuesday 26 September 2006 - 01:22PM (IST)

I'we been reading it with tears in my eyes. I think the music assent to this as well.
You just do this so naturally...

Tuesday 26 September 2006 - 10:59AM (CEST)

Marty-wonderful story of past pains and regret with that ever possible awakening of new beginnings at the end. Thanks and I hope you continue to share your stories with us!

Tuesday 26 September 2006 -


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