Sister, Brother, Sister


My little sister, Wren, was born July 26th, 1983. I was 18 months old. There is not a time in my memories when she was not there. There are many pictures taken of us running around together. There are some embarrassing pictures with our cloth diapers falling off.

We were mistaken for twins all the time. I would grow an inch taller, but Wren would quickly catch up with me and is, in fact, taller than me now. We were usually dressed alike for special occasions and pictures. People even ask us now.


My little brother, Logan, was born June 7th, 1987. I was 5 years old. I wanted Mom to have a boy, but Wren wanted a baby girl. I was so excited, and I took my role as the oldest quite seriously. In my 5-year-old memory I took on a lot of responsibility. I remember changing diapers and rocking Logan to sleep all the time.


Crawford’s only child was a daughter named Issaqueena. She was born June 11th, 1973. The first time I meet her was when she came to babysit us. We still lived in the government apartments at that time so I must have been 9 or just turned 10. We ran out to greet her as she walked up from the parking lot. She was holding something in her arms, books maybe. The first thing I remember thinking was that she was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. The second thing I remember was that my country accent was so thick she couldn’t understand a single word that I was saying.


The Fairy Tale

My mother meet Crawford Thomas Sparks when I was about 10 years old. He was a well-dressed, well spoken, older gentleman. He seemed pleasant and helpful. He was there to help my mother with the business aspect of a gay support group she was running.

He started hanging out more and wiggling his way into our life.  He would babysit us when Mom went out. We found out quickly you did as you were told, or you got a spanking when he was on watch. This was a vast change considering Mom let us get away with pretty much anything.

I’m not sure when friendship changed over to relationship. Soon there was talk about marriage and moving out of our government apartment to live with him in the Honey House.

The house got its nick name because Crawford had many honeybee hives on the property. He collected their honey and packaged it in bottles labeled Issaqueena Honey. As far as I know no business was ever had from the honey. We ate it ourselves over time. The bees were sold not to long after we moved there.

The Honey House was a little run down, but he promised to fix it up. It was going to be castle like. Each girl would have their own tower where the top floor reached the tree tops. We would live there forever bringing our spouses home instead of moving out to live with them. Our family would blend together into the ideal family and be together forever.

My mother and Crawford were married April 15th, 1992 in the forest on the Honey House property under a dogwood tree. The only others in attendance was Logan, my little brother; Wren, my little sister; Issaqueena, Crawford’s only child and 9 years my senior, and a preacher. We all dressed up with flowers in our hair. The wedding vows were changed upon Mom and Crawford’s behest to not say “Until death due us part”, but instead to say “forever”.