Yesterday was a tough day… We lost my brother Chris.
At only 45, he was far too young and had much yet to contribute. Rather than be angry about what won’t happen in the future, I’ll be thinking of the good he brought while he was here.
Primarily, I’m thinking of his two boys. Well, I should really say: his two young men. I can see Chris in them both: Fun. Hard working. dedicated. Hi older son is at college not far away. I’m sure he’s staying strong for his younger brother. Like Chris, he shows strengths in a way that benefits others more than himself. These young men are rightfully sad but I already see their parent’s strength in them and that tells me they will thrive and again be happy.
When I think of Chris, I see someone dedicated to others who made friends equally dedicated to him. One of his long time friends and I talked not long and they were distraught at Chris’ illness and the likely outcome. Yet when they recently visited Chris, it was smiles all around. Friends to the end.
I’m so grateful I got to visit him less than two weeks ago. So obviously sick. So obviously surrounded by those who loved him. I’m also glad our brother Jeff got to see him and spend time with him this week. Gratitude doesn’t express how thankful I am for my brother John and all the time he spent with Chris.
It’s my step-father John who I think of now. No parent should have to go through this sort of sadness. Yet he was there at Chris’ side every day. I think of him every day and wish I were closer to support him as he grieves.
Yesterday would have been grandma’s 103rd birthday. I like to think that Chris’ sudden departure yesterday was simply him rushing to join her birthday party… or perhaps he smelled her cookies! Regardless, he is again with her and his mother.
I wasn’t related to Chris my blood, yet he was my brother and I’m so grateful to have known him for almost 40 years. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see him every day, but I know that’s exactly how often I’ll miss him.
Farewell Chris. Save me some of grandma’s cookies.