|From Family Pictures|
Eight years ago today, I lost the one person I thought I'd grow old with. The person who knew my past better than I did, my present and we'd share the future. The person I could just glance at and he'd know what I was thinking...no words were even needed. On this day, I lost my big brother (Joe as he was called after he left for college; Joey as I still call him). He had a short and fierce battle with cancer (that word still causes my chest to ache)...the same cancer that took my grandfather when he was 61: cancer of the esophagus. The thing about esophageal cancer - by the time you're diagnosed with it, you're typically in the final stages of it. Or, at least that's what happened to my grandfather and my brother.
Life is a funny little thing...even when bad things happen, you still have to move forward. Time keeps moving. Losing a family member is no different, no matter how gut wrenching and unbelievably hard it is, you have to readjust and march on. Time doesn't necessarily ease the pain ~ perhaps it numbs it. I still go to call Joey. I long to hear his voice. A lot of things have happened since he died that I wish he had been here to help me with. Sometimes, though I know it wasn't his choice to die from cancer, I get mad that he left me to handle it all.
My life is ok (fine, good, etc.), but it is missing something (someone) and that is not going to change. No matter how great things go for me in this life, something (someone) will always be missing. It's like having an ice cream sundae w/o having the cherry on the top. It's still good, but something is missing.
|From Family Pictures|
On this day, I get a little melancholy.
I miss my brother and I'll grieve for the hole his death left in our lives. It won't be a sad day, just one with a few ups and downs. I rejoice in knowing he was a Christian and I will see him again.
You never know what life will throw at you. Enjoy your sundae with the cherry while you have it. Embrace your loved ones and let them know you love them. Treasure those God has placed in your life.
(If you have a long time to read, I invite you to check out an earlier post where I share more about my brother and my testimony. It's pretty lengthy. Joey's life verse: "I will never leave you nor forsake you.")