Saturday, July 6, 2024

White Boy

My sister-in-law died a couple of years ago. There were times we were very close and others when we did not speak. She was always good to my children. I loved her children.

Her mother was American Indian and her father was French. She did not see much of him and little of her mother. She was mostly raised in an Indian boarding school.

She told me that once at a basketball game she gushed over a cute boy on their team. Her older sister explained that he was her brother. She had no idea that she had brothers. She soon found out that she had a large family.

She was close to her two older sisters. She also had three younger sisters. The older two of them had babies the same time as I did. All those babies... But I digress.

When my sister-in-law was still in school she told the nuns she was going to marry a white boy. She met my brother-in-law and fell hopelessly in love. 

Against the wishes of his parents they married and promptly had three children in three years. 

Now my brother-in-law was not always the best husband. For one thing he tended to wander and carry on with other women. My sister-in-law was naturally hurt but she was the best wife she knew how to be. She always forgave him.

Once she went to visit her old boarding school. When she was talking to one of the nuns she told her about her husband. The nun asked her why she ended up marrying a white boy.

When my brother-in-law was in prison she stayed by his side even though he had been wandering before he went in. She found out she had inoperable cancer.

She lived with the knowledge that she was dying. She told me that she had prepared herself to die but she hoped for another year so she would be there when her husband came home.

She was still alive when he came home. I worried that he would carry on with the woman he had been seeing before. Instead he went with her to doctor appointments. He helped her get around. He even went to church with her. He made her last days happy.

All she wanted to be was his wife. In her last days he was finally also her husband.  


  1. rhymeswithplague here. A fascinating post, Emma. It could be expanded into a wonderful book. It reads like the plot of a heart-wrenching Thomas Hardy novel with a happy but teary-eyed ending.

    P.S. - My right eye can now see beautiful bright colors, while my left eye still sees what I now realize are b shades grey.

    1. Wonderful news about your eye. I hope the next eye will turn out so well. As for my sister-in-law all she ever wanted was to be my brother-in-law's wife. Toward her end I could hear in her voice how happy she was.