I am so blessed to have my two beautiful sisters in my life. They are such generous, loving and kind women. My brothers and I owe them huge gratitude for all they do for our aging Mother. Between the two of them they nurture her on all levels, taking care of her health and finances all the while making sure she is not left alone. Each of them in their own unique way provide her with what she needs. Thank you Trish and Maureen. I love you.

It is exactly a month since I left South Africa after the trip I took back to my homeland. It was a very important trip for me in so many ways and I am still processing its impact on me. I am the fourth of five children raised in a traditional Catholic family. There are three girls bookended by two brothers. All four of my siblings live within fifteen minutes drive of each other and my Mom. My Dad died almost 20 years ago at the age of 67 and my Mom has been alone since. She is now 83 years old and has been in a retirement home since she was 79. Around the age of 80 she developed macular degeneration and sadly is one of the few percent who has not responded to treatment and therefore has very limited sight. This for an extremely independent strong woman has been so challenging

Back to my beautiful sisters, Maureen and Trish. I moved to the United States 27 years ago and in their own unique ways they have been my thread of connection to my family and my roots and my support in my life for all I have gone through. My prayer is that I have in some way been that to them. In the middle of last year Trish said she felt it would be good for me to come to Cape Town for Christmas. I knew she was right, my Mom is getting older and it is important to be able to see her. Knowing how difficult that would be for me financially she said she would take care of my ticket if I could take the time off work. Wow! Not only did she take care of my ticket to South Africa and a week in London, she also arranged all the details for me, which felt so wonderful. I felt so nurtured and so grateful. She went out of her way to make the whole trip wonderful for me and her thoughtfulness and caring is priceless. We had such fun planning the huge Christmas party she arranged especially and our relationship has developed such ease and comfort. In so many ways we are kindred spirits and my children have often commented that we have the same responses to things around us. Strong genes I guess:) I have shared some beautiful memories with her on their trips over to see me and I am grateful for her thoughtfulness and effort. I love you Trish.

Maureen is the most wonderful mother and I benefitted from that early in my life. As the older sister she guided me through some of the challenges of growing up. She has always been there and I am amazed at the fact that over the past 30 years I have only been in her presence about a dozen times. She has always supported my work and my growth and I have memory of one or two gentle comments she has made over the years that shone a light on what I was really struggling with and yet was blinded to. These were transformational. Thank you for always being there and for the shoulder to cry on and the openness to celebrate with. I appreciate all you did for me on my trip and always. I love you Maureen

Thanks for all you both do for Mom. Thanks for all you do for me and my family. This is a connection that only deepens with age and I look forward to many wonderful trips and celebrations for us in the future.

Love and Light, Marion