Hi! It’s me! Lily!
Okay, you get a few exclamation points today. But things aren’t quite back to normal, so… maybe that’s all you get. We’ll see.
So today Beth and I went to see Crystal.
She was awake and somewhat alert. They didn’t let her have her phone because, well… so she seemed bored out of her mind. Beth ran over and… well… would have glomp-hugged her, but it’s a hospital, so she just sat next to her and cried.
Crystal looked uncomfortable. As well she should!
All Beth said was “how could you, Crystal? How could you?”
Crystal was quiet for a moment, and then sighed. “I’ll talk,” she said. “But not here. I’ve already got enough people trying to head-shrink me.” And a tear formed in her eye. “It… it just got too much.”
“I’m your best friend,” Beth almost spat. “Or at least I thought I was. You’d better talk,” she said, quietly. “If you do that again… I’m done. I’m not ever crying that hard again. You’d better do everything in your power to not ever do that again.”
Crystal choked up. Her lower lip trembled. She grabbed Beth’s hand. But she didn’t say anything. What could she say, after all. Beth looked her in the eyes, and after a few seconds, nodded, squeezed her hand, and walked out of the room, looking like she was about five seconds away from fresh tears. I had to go to her. But first, I had to talk to Crystal.
I sat next to Crystal, and was quiet for a bit.
“I didn’t notice,” I finally said. “I’m supposed to be your big sister, and I never noticed.”
“You didn’t,” she said. “But that’s not your fault. It’s not like I put a huge sign on my head with blinking lights and speakers.”
“I’m not a good big sister,” I said morosely. “I’m sorry.”
She sighed, “You were a fine big sister. And besides, even if you weren’t, not being a good big sister wouldn’t land me here. You think you’re that important?”
“Well, I was hoping I was at least a little important,” I said.
“It’s not about you,” she said. “You’ve always been good to me, but you’re… you’re… what’s that word. Solip…. solip.. .solipsistic. The world doesn’t revolve around you, Lily.”
“No, but my friends and family are my world,” I said. She flinched a little.
“Point,” she said quietly. “They are. You’ve always treated your friends like your family. I…” she sniffled. “I took that for granted.”
I took her hand. “I’ll be a better big sister if you’ll be a better little sister, okay?”
“And if you ever do that again, I’ll finish the job myself.”
She smiled wanly. “Thanks for having my back, Lily.”
“I think Beth’s having another breakdown in the waiting room. I’m serious, Crystal. Don’t ever do that again. Okay?”
She nodded. “I promise.” She grimaced. “I wasn’t counting on surviving, but now that I did… dying isn’t fun. I don’t think I like it.”
I squeezed her hand and walked out.
Beth was in the waiting room, and barely holding it together. I took her back to the car and let her cry it out before we headed home.
She should be released in a day or two. Then, I guess, one day at a time.
Am I solipsistic? What does that even mean? Let me look it up… oh. It means I think the world revolves around me, just as she said. I don’t know. I don’t think so. Maybe? It’s more that the world revolves around me and my family. But isn’t that the case for everyone? Maybe… maybe not being solipsistic is part of being a better big sister.
Or maybe just a better person in general.
Maybe I couldn’t have noticed. But I’m not sure I even tried. And that’s where I was a bad big sister. We all have sleepovers and play games and go to the mall and do all the fun things that girls do, but… that just makes me a fun friend. Not a good big sister. I’ll have to work on that.
But… Sabby did take me aside and thanked me for being a very good big sister to Beth. I guess so. She needed me and I was there. So I guess there’s that. I’m not completely awful.
Diana went to visit her later in the day. We kept her up to date. She was worried too, of course, but while they’re friends, they’re not best friends like Beth and Crystal. But she was happy when Crystal woke up like the rest of us. She’s a good kid.
And where in the world did Crystal learn such a big word? Geez!!!