December 6th was not a good day.
Two members of my family passed away yesterday, two totally unrelated deaths of close members of my birthfamily.
Yeah.......TWO of my family members died on the same day. So sad. And a little unbelievable.
First I got the news that my 2nd cousin Bill had passed away. He had been in the hospital a few times in the last few months for dehydration, but he bounced back each time. He passed away in the hospital yesterday and I am in shock that he is gone.
Bill is really special to me, he was the first person in my birthfamily that I ever met.
In the fall of 2009, Bill and his wife Phyllis met me and my Timmy at a park and we all spent quite a few hours together. It was quite an amazing experience for me.
Here is a picture of Bill and I the day we met in 2009
I look so much like the McMillins! There is definitely a resemblance between Bill and I.
The noses, the smile lines, shape of our faces.
Bill, I miss you. I will hold you forever in a special place in my heart. Thank you for everything you did for me, Thank you for opening up your life and your family to me. I will never ever forget you.
Another pic of Bill and I at the park:
And later that day, Bill took me to meet his mom (my 1st cousin once removed) Bernice.
Here we are pouring over old family photos.
Bernice is wearing blue. Bill's sister Ginny in the kitchen.
And here is a picture of Bill and his awesome wife Phyllis in 2010. They are standing by a flyer they made and distributed to help me search for my twin brothers. (YES! They did that for ME!!!)
And this picture below was taken when Bill and a few other cousins took me to Illinois to meet our Great Uncle Sam.
Since this picture was taken, both of the men in the picture with me have passed away.
I am so lucky that I got the chance to know My Great Uncle Sam and my cousin Bill, if even for just a short time. But really it was way too short. So not fair.
And if it wasn't enough for me to lose my special cousin Bill yesterday, I also got the news that I lost my half-sister Jeannie.
Jeannie and I had the same father. I have known about Jeannie since April 2000, when I learned my birthfather had a wife and 5 kids before he met my birthmom and had the twins and I.
I didn't learn the names of the 5 kids (my half-siblings) until February 2011.
I searched for these siblings for 11 years, and I lost my sister just 9 months after I found her. I am devastated.
Jeannie was the youngest of my father kids with his first wife. She was 12 when I was born.
Jeannie passed away after she had surgery yesterday. The cause of her death is still unknown.
Since I found her in February, Jeannie and I spoke on the phone, and we were facebook buddies. My last contact with her was when she posted a comment on one of my facebook posts on March 23rd.
My sister Jeannie and her little doggie:
I am so sad that Jeannie is gone. I really wanted to meet her. I wish I would have made the time to drive down to where she lived. She was only 350 miles away from me.
First Timmy broke his leg in February so we couldn't travel, then there was our wedding/ honeymoon and meeting my brothers in May, and then I was preparing for my huge family reunion in July..........we talked about going down to see her in the fall, and it just didn't happen. Now it's December and she's gone.
I was so caught up with other things, and I didn't make time for my sister.
I so regret that now.
and now it's too late. I blew it.
I'm sorry Jeannie. For the rest of my life I will be so sorry.
Jeannie, Thank You for accepting me as your sister and for sharing so much about your side of my family. Thank you for sharing your childhood pictures with me, and THANK YOU for sharing with me the first picture I ever saw of my dad. Thank you Jeannie for telling me so many good things about our dad. I wish I could have grown up knowing you as a sister. Having only 9 months to know you wasn't long enough at all.
I am more than a little shook up. Losing Bill and Jeannie on the same day has hit me hard in the gut. I spent years looking for my family and I am not ready to give any of them up. It's quite a blow to my near-perfect life and it sure does hurt.