June 26, 2017 one of my sister wives passed. Even though life was tough sharing a husband and the years after leaving polygamy we weren’t close there is a certain bond that sister wives share. One that is meaningful and that I will reflect on fondly.
Sylvias oldest daughter called me with the news and my heart broke for all the kids and my heart was heavy. I had lost a friend/ a sister. My mind went to the fond memories we had with each other. We were truly there for each other and she was a great strength.
When we were living polygamy often it was just me and Sylvia left to survive. Sylvia made sure we were taken care of. We were a team more so than with our husband.
I admired her willpower to stand up to Homer. When he didn’t have money for us she would firmly stand her ground that the family needed to be cared for and she was going to go to work and do that. My job was to watch the kids and she would go provide for us. I am so thankful that she did this as I didn’t have the courage to go out and work and I would have much rather been taking care of the children.
We complimented each other with the children. I was great with the babies and she was great with the teenage kids.
Sylvia was an excellent cook and when she made up her mind about something she went after it with a full force of energy and power.
She would work really hard and then come home for what she called a “power nap.” Then we would go clean houses together or load all the children up and go to the park for a getaway.
One time she took us to Vallarta where a cruise ship had docked. It looked like we had a little nursery school so she did her brilliant talk and convinced the worker to let us all on to explore the ship. Other times we would go watch as the airplanes came in and giggle at the type of clothes that the people would wear.
Another time we went to Tapeak for school clothes. Mexico is not known for the safety of lone women traveling so when the car had a flat we needed to get out of sight. Sylvia skillfully guided the car off the highway and the 50 foot drop so we could camp for the night until daylight when she would walk to get a tire. We laid blankets on the ground and in the back of the car. We both grabbed a hammer and a wrench to keep by our heads as we slept. We heard men walk by and one man came up and asked if we needed any help and offered to take us to his house. We were smarter than that and turned him down. A few minutes later the man came back with his pregnant wife. We decided it was safe enough, so we stayed in their small house made out of small sticks, mud, and straw with dirt floors but we felt safe for the night. In the morning this humble man and his wife fed us, probably everything they had left in the house. We offered to pay them but they said no, they were just excited because they were sure to be the talk of the town because they had taken in some American people and what a treat that was.
When we left polygamy and moved to the states Sylvia used her talents to open up a furniture store where she painted and designed custom furniture and she started painting.
Here are a few of her many talents
It was a lovely service, but such a shame that the family doesn’t get together more often for pleasant activities. It was beautiful to hear her life story and a few of the grandchildren sing. There is now about 82 total at my last count.
Sylvia will be missed. Farewell my friend, my sister. I will remember and cherish the memories we had.