When Shields are useless……..

Growing up, My Sister and I were almost always at odds. Some people said we were normal siblings. I don’t think we were. I don’t think we hated each other but, I’m not sure we were ever happy together either. Despite my beliefs we almost always took pictures like this:


We never really played together much. Especially once we found our “hobbies” in school and with our friends. I lived down the street at my best friends house most of the time, sleeping over there often…and becoming a surrogate part of his family. What she did during that time? I have no idea.

She was a dancer:


and spent most of her time completely devoting herself to becoming an even more brilliant dancer. By the time we reached Highschool,


(damaged photo courtesy of Hurricane Katrina, that fucking bitch)

even living in the same house, we barely saw each other at all. Especially once we learned how to drive.

In school, She was outrageously smart! Me? I struggled with everything but writing (of course) and back then I HATED to write. She was going places and doing things. I was drawing pictures of knights and dragons and dreaming of one day building a castle.

She was VERY beautiful. I was awkward and never quite happy with my looks.
She was popular. I was lucky to have the handful of friends I had…unless it was wednesday or the moon was full or high tide…I don’t know…every day was a new adventure in who would decide to bully you….

But I never stopped trying to protect Her..and I did love Her. Once, a boy she was dating was screaming so loudly at her in his car, I could hear him through the open window of my bedroom…
She came into the house crying, He tried to follow Her in…that was his mistake..I was ready to wrap a cast iron floor lamp around his head when my Mom got in between us and by some miracle (for him) my dad came home early from work…He took him outside…and I went back to my room.

She left him right after that.

I never checked to see if She was ok, and She never told me Thank You. Didn’t need to be done. It was understood. If you’re my blood or I love you…that’s what I do.

She gave my parents Hell…they were constantly unsure of what to do with Her…and She bullied them around in ways that would make my Jaw drop open…because I know I would never have gotten away with that….

When She was diagnosed with MS (multiple sclerosis) we were in our twenties. I remember it like it was yesterday. It was a small manifestation. We learned about what the disease does and that there was no cure..and we hoped it would spare Her most of the rest of Her life…I hugged Her..and cried.

She went on with Her life…and so Did I….She got married and had two beautiful girls….I got married and had 2 beautiful kids of my own.

Before Katrina, I saw my family pretty regularly…After the storm they are about an hour’s drive away from Me. We visit when we can. But I am very removed from them and their daily lives. Both My parents and My Sister.

Recently, over the last few years, Her disease has rapidly progressed. Its taken most of her mobility away and in the last few days, it’s doing something to Her ability to communicate.

She’s been admitted to the hospital today…

I sit here typing this because I, Her big brother, am powerless to defend Her. There is no cast iron lamp I can attempt to wrap around this Disease’s head…and when I am upset, I write.

I just got off the phone with my Dad. Who is crying uncontrollably. And He has every right to. I have children, same as He. I know what kind of pain this is causing Him.

You feel weak and stupid and like you aren’t good for anything.

…and you desperately want to Help. meandlisa2


About Eric

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63 Responses to When Shields are useless……..

  1. This is beautiful. And sad. And I’m sorry for what you’re all going through.

  2. moonskittles says:

    My heart and prayers go to her Eric.. I am sorry to hear this.. 😦

  3. georgetteann says:

    Sending hugs and prayers for your family.

  4. I’m so sorry Eric. It is so hard when those we care about are in a fight and we cannot help. I will keep her in my prayers.

  5. Rita says:

    Oh Eric, I don’t know that I have the right words. I’m sorry for your sister’s battle and your heartache over the feeling of helplessness. I love you, little brother of the soul. In my prayers.

  6. ***tears*** truly I have tears. I understand this more than I can explain. My heart is rapidly beating because I understand the helplessness you’re feeling.
    She is beautiful.. And your words about her are so touching. Thank you for sharing this with us. I can feel the love you both share. I hope you can feel my love and support. (((Eric))))) ❤️

  7. Chrissy says:

    omg that just made me cry, so sorry Eric, deeply sorry you have to go through this. My thoughts and prayers are with you my friend.xx hugs

  8. phoenixgrey85 says:

    I am so sorry about everything that’s happening right now. I can only pray you find the best way through it possible. I know the helplessness of watching someone you love slip away. *hugs*

  9. Lady Ate says:

    My heart goes for you your sister and your family. Wish you all lot of strenght and my prayers are with you all. ❤ xx

  10. OH, shit, Eric. Dammit. I feel like I should be sad but I’m so angry. My kingdom for a cast iron lamp! Oh, if we could attempt to wrap a lamp around the head of this shit. I am so sorry. For you, for your lovely sister and her family, your parents… These things are never simple and the more complicated they are, the more emotions to deal with and the messier the wound. Gods, I’m sorry. 😦 ❤

  11. Eric Syrdal says:

    Sarah, please don’t apologize. You and I are feeling the same emotions about this. I am angry, frustrated and Sad. I love you, Sweet Friend. Please don’t apologize. It’s fine.

  12. Eric Syrdal says:

    I would never leave this place, with you, SisterHeart. 💜 I’m here for good.

  13. lorriebowden says:

    I feel for you and your family. It is so hard to understand when life intervenes in ways that cause so much pain. I am certain your sister knows that you have her back!! Sending living, healing energy!

  14. Geetha B says:

    What sadness strikes but remember those we love never really leave us. They dwell in the memories we treasure of them. Meanwhile, keep these moments intensely vibrant with your presence so that you may at least morally have that cast iron lamp there, that she may see that her brother is there to watch over her. However difficult this phase may be, it is important to be there, to show your sister all the love and support she has. May her pain be subdued and her Knowledge of all of your Love enhanced. May all of your pain be washed away by the Love your hearts feel for each other. May the Universe show Mercy and shine it into your lives in these dark moments

    • Eric says:

      Thank you, Geetha. I am going to visit her in the hospital shortly. I will carry your kind words with me.
      Thank you.

      • Geetha B says:

        Welcome and I hope she will feel the love. I witnessed sclerosis effects on a chessplayer friend in Geneva. He was not blood family but chess brings its own sense of family to regular players. Very emotional times though he was very brave

  15. A beautiful heartfelt post Eric, which brought tears to my eyes. I’m so sorry for the pain you and your family are going through. Sending healing light and love ❤️❤️❤️

  16. This brought tears to my eyes. I am praying for you, your beautiful sister, her husband, children and your family, Eric. I am sorry you are all suffering so. Life is never easy. Your sister is blessed to have a brother like you, my sweet friend. 🌹

  17. katwalk65 says:

    What a beautiful relationship you two have. How she must treasure you. You must know that your love has done everything possible for her and she knows this. Your life is your gift.

  18. katwalk65 says:

    I just lost my dad in March. If there is ever a thing I can provide in terms of support for anyone who is grieving, I try to do that. Please feel free to reach out. It’s never ever easy. Blessings to you and yours in this difficult time.

  19. Ms. Vee says:

    Something told me to come to your blog, although I follow you. I am sad to hear this. Prayers are coming your way.

  20. rachel says:

    the perfect picture of a protective pain in the ass big brother. i’ll say a prayer for your sister…and your sweet dad.

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