A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words – Sisters

Do you remember when I did the “a picture is worth a thousand post” a few times a while back? Well, I decided to do it again. You can find the other two here and here

It’s a writing exercise I made up. I pretty much just randomly pick a picture, and then write 1,000 words as fast as possible with the thoughts that come to me from the pic. It has a little bit of editing, but it’s  supposed to be just a spur of the moment thing so you can see how good you are with creativity. If any of y’all want to join in and do it, just leave a blog address in my comments section so I can go check it out! The only rule is it needs to be exactly 1,000 words. 😉

I remember it like it was yesterday. How could I forget? It wasn’t because it was the last happy memory I have, because it wasn’t. It wasn’t that I was bored with having to sit still for so long, I wasn’t. It was more about what I learned right after the picture had been taken. That is what changed my life forever. 
The day had started out like any other: Balmy and full of promise. I knew the morning would consist of getting up, dressing, having mother pull the curlers out of my hair. If luck was with me then perhaps I would get to go and play in the dirt behind our house after breakfast. Yes, curlers and mud pies, that’s what my life seemed to consist of. 
Gracie and Jane were my darling little sisters who followed me everywhere. I knew not all girls liked their younger siblings tagging along, but they made my life feel useful. I felt as if I were helping Mother when I entertained them, plus, they found me to be such a wonderful playmate that they never tired of doing what I suggested. 
“Guess what we’re going to do today, Livy!” Mother’s voice was filled with enthusiasm as she gently pulled a brush through my hair. 
“Pick berries?” I imagined the cooling taste of blueberries. I knew they would stain my fingers a purplish hue, but that didn’t bother me any. As a seven year old, I wasn’t very concerned about my appearances yet. In fact, I felt that the dyed fingers was rather neat and I could show it off to Jimmy. He’d be jealous that he hadn’t gotten to eat his fill of berries. He and I were always trying to out-do each other. As hard as I tried to get above him, it seemed like we were always trading victory for victory. 
“Oh no, berry season ended already.” Mother gave my hair one final brush. “You girls are going to get photographed.” 
“Really? Are we really?”
“You, and Gracie and Janie.” Mother’s voice sounded strange, so I twisted around to look at her. She had a particular expression on her face, but she smiled at me before I could ask her what was going on. 
“Time to get your sisters up now.” She gave me a pat and pushed me off her lap. This was another part of our routine. It had been the same since before I could remember. I would go into our bedroom singing a song and clapping my hands. First of all Gracie would squirm and try and put her head under the pillow, but after a well-placed kiss from me right in the middle of her forehead, she would wake up and be the bright and chipper girl she was. Janie was a bit harder and took several kisses from both Gracie and me before she would clamber out of bed. Mother said that waking up to kisses made for a good day. I agreed with her. 
After helping them into the clothes Mother had laid out for them the night before I herded them downstairs where Mother was standing at the stove flipping pancakes. 
“Pancakes?” My eyes lit up at the sight of the stack in front of me. “And real syrup?” I could feel my mouth watering. We normally only got such a treat on the weekends. “Is today something special?” I searched my memory, trying to see if I was missing a birthday or some other event that warranted a celebration. 
“I’m just so happy for my girls.” Mother’s voice had a catch in it, but I didn’t know how to address the matter, so I didn’t say anything. A little bit of the excitement about our special breakfast went out of me though. Why was Mother acting so strange? 
“Olivia!” Father came striding into the room just then and snatched me up and tossed me up into the air.
“Father!” Giggling, I leaned down and wrapped my arms around his neck in a great big hug. “Why aren’t you at work?”
“Ever the worrier, aren’t you princess?” Father returned my hug and then set me down. “You’re only seven you know, you don’t need to act so big and strong yet.” 
I smiled. “I’m not worried, I was just surprised.” I stepped back so Gracie and Jane could both crowd in to give Father hugs. 
“Fresh from bed, huh?” Father ruffled their still bedraggled hair and then winked at them. “I suppose Mother will have you all primped and curled later on for when you get your photo taken, right?” 
At Gracie and Jane’s blank looks, I leaned down and with great excitement explained to them how we were actually going to get our picture taken! 
“Will you be in it, too?” I gave Father a hopeful look. 
“No, darling. This time it’s just going to be our three girls.” He reached out to pat my head, then pulled his hand back. “I don’t want to mess up your curls, my do they look nice, Livy.” 
Grasping his hand, I set it lightly on my head. “I like it when you pat my head, Father, and if you do it lightly it won’t mess them.” And then I winked at him. That was one of the things he’d recently taught me to do, and I never tired of it. I felt like I was sending him a secret message. 
I’ll never forget the day because it started out perfectly. And it ended with changes I could have never imagined. I’ll never forget the day because that’s when I found out that Gracie and Jane weren’t my sisters at all. That Mother and Father were actually my aunt and uncle. And that my real parents were coming back for me and I was going to live with them. That was the day I found out I wasn’t who I thought I was. That was the day my life changed forever. 

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