Had he lived, yesterday would have been my only sibling, my brothers’ 69th birthday. Although he’s been gone for 18 years, it’s always a day I equally rejoice and feel sadness; a day I spend both remembering and missing his physical presence in my life.
When Tom died in 1993 it was as if I had been carried away in an avalanche. Dealing with a terminal disease requires an amazing balancing act by the victim and loved ones to retain the vision of what the end result will bring~crossing through the veil. It is a time of extreme sadness and loss for those left behind once the transition to the other side of the veil occurs. It is also a celebration of the love you shared, the time spent, the memories created and the knowledge that the spirit leaving the human shell it inhabits in this life is a part of the continuum, the circle of life. Heartbreaking for us here and yet, simply a transition away, leaving behind the confines of a body that no longer is serviceable for them. The physical body changes, but it is the spirit within that we love.
I spent as much time as possible with Tom before his passing. His illness and death occurred at one of the most intensely busy times in my life; primary caregiver for my four young children, a husband who traveled, elderly parents who were both grief stricken and ill themselves. With the need to run our affairs and Tom’s, it was demanding, a handful. I often prayed and asked if my ability as someone who always managed and took care of “everything” had not been overestimated on this issue. Tom and I were close and I comforted him, listened to him, handled his medical care and tried to make the end of his physical life as easy as I could. He was very sick and, until the last two months, an hour and a half drive from me, but I made every effort to be there and his rock as his life ebbed away. The grief I didn’t have time for then and in the subsequent years seems to reappear every October 20th, but only briefly. The celebration of who he was will always be the majority of my memories of him on his birthday.
I still feel him, sense him and the love and fun will always be there. While he is gone from my presence, my heart still holds the memories of our childhood and adult lives, the laughter, joy and sorrows we shared together. Sometimes when I am halfway between here and the other side, I hear his voice and sense his spirit close. For me, in my memory and intuitive mind, he will never be gone nor forgotten, and the love will always be retained in my heart. Until we meet again…love you always.