I have composed my reply to my sister's latest email. Haven't hit the 'send' button yet; I'm going to sometime today, I think. My email is loooooong. The end result of many hours of labor.

*sigh*

My husband said last night how my email is too long to post on my blog because no one will read it. "They'll be overwhelmed." sez he. I protested. I think at least some of you will read it. Prove me right, please. *big grin*

I'm going to post my sister's email today. That will give ya'll time to read it over and come up with your own impressions before I lay out the facts. I realize that many of you won't have the context of my history with my sister to inform your reading of her email. That's okay. By the time you read my response you'll know what's goin' on. If you're interested in the chronology of our last email exchange you would start here. Then you'd go here for the second part. There's more, but that would probably give you enough context to understand what is being discussed in her most recent email and my soon-to-be posted response.

I'll post my response to my sister's email after I get around to sending it to her. I'll probably put it up tomorrow.

Without further ado...here is sister dearest's attempt at reconciliation after a two year silence:

***********************************

[time stamp on email is: Sat, 10 May 2008 22:05:38 -0700]

Dear Anna,

Much time has passed since our last communication and I hope you are well. I know you have moved to XXXXX for [husband's] work and I hope you like it there.

It has been heavy on my heart all these years that I have offended you. The thought of you hurting because of something I have done is a terrible thing. There is no doubt in my mind that I did something which caused this, but time has not helped me bring about a revelation of the event. I do so wish you would tell me so I could offer you a specific apology directed to the specific pain I have caused you. I would also like to know if there is anything I can do to make up for this offense.

I know it has been a lifelong struggle for you to love and understand me. We have such varied perspectives on life. I know I have always stepped unaware on your sensitive spots and caused you much pain. I am so sorry for that. I hope you can believe that most of the pain I have caused you has been unintentional.

There were a few things you said to me that I have spent much time thinking about. I saw there was truth in it and I wanted to really give it my complete attention. You talked about my need for you to respond in a certain way for me to really feel validated. This made you feel contrived and manipulated. I can see that. I am so sorry that I did this to you. Not only you, but others close to me in my life. I struggled with this reveal of my character for many months before I realized it was a matter of surrender to God. What you identified was real and needed uprooting but no amount of my own effort was going to be able to remove it from my life. It was a spiritual matter that only God could address for any lasting success.

Which leads me to the most profound truth you shared with me. You grew tired of me talking about my damages from childhood and asked me if I had so much knowledge...why was I so stuck (D's paraphrase). Good question and one I could not in all integrity ignore. So again I asked God what was up. I learned from Him that going back to the places of pain, the roots of weak character, is only the beginning. It is the starting point, not the completion of the work which needs to be completed. Knowing these roots is essential for surrendering them to God who is the only one who can heal and restore my character. He was showing me these things not so they could be my "truth", but so I could give them to Him for healing. Needless to say, this has been a process. But thanks be to God, "He who began a good work in me will be faithful to complete it."

So I thank you for helping me to see that how I was perceiving life and how I was living was not good enough. I thank God that there is victory in Jesus and a life short of that is no life at all.
In light of our differences of both personality and experiences, I know we will always have things we cannot agree on. But please do not use it as an excuse to stop loving me. Please let me know what I have done because I want no offenses to be between us any longer. I do not hold any illusions that we will go back to being close. I know too much time has been allowed for festering of pain and old wounds do not heal easily. I am simply requesting an opportunity to make amends to my sister whom I dearly love.

Love,
D

***********************************

Does she have you convinced she is sincere? That I'm just being a hard-ass? Maybe she is and I am.

From my insider's point of view, though, it is the other way around.

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