A Letter to a Sister


Your Whats App profile says last seen was 3rd September, 2015. Our last conversation you saw me put a selfie of my girlfriend and I and you thought your admired it. I admire your profile picture you said, you two look good. I think your wedding will be before your graduation.  And I said hehehe wachana na mimi and stop stalking. You never stopped, I know you were always in the shadows viewing and downloading my profile pictures and to say the least, those profile pictures were good, some of the good parts that come when dating a professional photographer. This complement was far-fetched though because I knew you, perhaps too well. Initially you had a problem with the fact the my girlfriend was not Kikuyu, you said it out and loud and I hauled all kinds stones at you calling you tribal and you took a chill pill and explained that you just thought couples of very different origins have a lot of problems because of the differences. You were trying to protect me, always have, because we practically grew together, perhaps a little jealous too. Well, sis, you were wrong on that one. It is almost two years now and I am not looking for any new girlfriend any time soon or ever again. In your face!



Kate is sullen these days. I know what you would say. Something like –But she is always sullen. That would be true, Kate is one of those 90s kids that just loved to cry. She is more sullen these days. She not only works during weekends these days but also adopted this new behaviour of silence for no reason. Like she does not speak at all unless it is completely necessary. It is as if she calculates her words in the morning and signs a contract that the entire day she swears to speak only 10000 words and not any more. I tried to tell her to start playing golf because it cheers people up but these days nobody listens to me because I gave up my working out routine. I will say something I think she should do and she will reply with something nasty about the kilos I have been gaining the past few months. Viona, our smallest sister is worse. This one has no chills. She will say that my stomach is growing big and not even flinch about my feelings. But my stomach is not growing big, I swear. I will go back to my working out routine – I promise. Or not. You left us what do you care anyway?



But I watched Kate breakdown by your graveside the other day and there was nothing I could do about it. You left her and she looked up to you as did we. So I did what any smart man would do, I put on my dark shades to hide my falling tears and walked away. This one I did not know how to solve. I walked away from home, from things we once shared because the memories weighed on me like the sins of hell. These days I have a new home. I rarely visit our old one because the gaps that you once obstructed glare at me like the sun on January. Mom complains a lot about moving out completely but only I know the demons am tackling. Therefore if you ever decided to stop by in your other life you will not find me in Nakuru anymore. Look for me in Nyeri, I would give the street and the address but dead people do not make house calls, do they?



Our brother, David is strong. Perhaps too strong. He is a man of God and to him God has a purpose for everything that happens. He lost both you his blood sister and his friend your husband two weeks later. Sometimes I wonder how he still manages us to crack us up in laughter but he has only one word – God. My relationship and church has not changed since you left however, it is simple actually – we do not step into each other’s lives. Church to me represents deceitful hope and invalid promises so I make my own promises and keep them. I find hope in the people I trust and love and live by that. I do not ask no one I cannot see for anything unless it’s a phone call to dad when the pressures of the month have made my rent late and I need money from him.



Speaking of dad, he needs a new car. Your husband used to have the best car for him always but now I know dad is wondering where exactly cars are bought because you people did it for him each time. The car he has now has hit walls countless times courtesy of people like Kate learning to drive and thinking driving is like Need for Speed. Smh! I adore your relationship though, it must have been love that sent your husband to the grave two weeks after you. He simply could not see a world without you in it. Love to die for. He just forgot to leave daddy a new car before he left.



But people who just decide to leave should just say their farewells in advance. That is actually my problem, we are talking one moment and we are not the next because you are no more. That’s just rude. It is like a breakup with an abusive cheating husband. Hurts like a bitch. I know you would have loved to personally tell us you were leaving if you could. Knowing you, you would probably have called a party, make a goat or two to lose their heads and amid supper just lay it plain and bare that you were done with this timeline of existence and you were moving on to the next. We would be shocked and sad but we would have time to prepare. Probably prep my heart that loves you dearly by coating it with iron or something hard such that it would not shatter into a thousand pieces when you breathed your last.



I muse in fantasies sometimes, I see you making Christmas trees for people in your next life like you used to do for us. Last Christmas we had no Christmas tree, Christmas was just fucked up and if it were not for the limiting factors like parental figures I would have preferred to spend it somewhere seated by a table in a noiseless club taking shots of a lethal liquor, something well above 40% and smooth with nothing to chase it because life does not chase its cruelty when it does a number on you, does it?



I am alright though, as you can see. Still failing in my computer science classes because of changing preferences. But I will be graduating soon and put the damn degree in the lowest part of my book drawers and move on to write stories about people because people are interesting unlike computers. People have these aspects of hope, defiance, love, beauty, ambition, cruelty and life that just needs to be explored. I will join you sooner or later, hopefully later because I have these books I feel I have to get written before my timed demise. Mine I will say my goodbyes and leave an entire bunch of kids and grandkids to be engineers, business people and artists. I am not scared of the unknown because what lies ahead is as simple as mom’s Mpesa pin. It is a simple decision of choice. People have control of their destinies they themselves unless they begin waiting to be surprised and when the worst comes crumbling all around our existence, we put on dark shades shed tears and pick ourselves up.


I am not going to delete our last conversation chat on what’s app because these bits keep you alive to bring sanity to my mind moments like these.


Feature Image: Mukiri Gitiri



Dennis Peters



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