Posted in Personal, Relationships, Sorrow

Happy Birthday, Brother

Time heals all wounds, they say. 

October is always kind of difficult for me now, although some years are worse than others.  It took me a bit to figure out why this one seemed a little more difficult than years past, and then I remembered, this year is the 25th year. 

Ah.  Yes.  A “milestone.”  That explains why it’s so much more on my mind than … normal. 

But really, it’s not normal to remember your brother is dead.   None of us should have dead brothers, or sisters …

Death is a part of life only because we can’t escape it, but if we could, we sure as hell would.  Grief sucks.  And as a believer, I know death was never part of God’s plan. 

The whole month is draped in its own mourning cloth that has nothing to do with Halloween.  I got the news on the 1st – although he’d been dead several days by that point but he’d only just then been discovered.  His birthday was the 25th, and the memorial service was on the 30th, but I couldn’t go.  I couldn’t afford plane tickets and my ex … well.  Let’s just say my ex’s behavior regarding my brother’s death is part of the reason he’s an ex, and leave it at that.

I don’t write this looking for sympathy, because I’m not.  I’m not comfortable with that.  I’ve come to a place where I don’t share too many personal things on the blog anymore.  A sort of contracting, I suppose, a pulling-in, circling the wagons.  I’m not even exactly sure why I am sharing this now, although I do feel this sense that I need to honor my brother.  I need to wish him a Happy Birthday, even if God is the only One Who can pass the message along. 

He was so much older than me, starting high school when I was born, and embarrassed about his mother having a baby at his age.  He moved out when I was three, then eventually married and became a father himself.  We weren’t close – how could we be?  I figured he was just waiting for me to acquire some adult life under my belt so we could have more things in common.  I was so happy when he started calling me, and we spent quite a bit of time on the phone during that last year. 

Finally!  I thought we were finally saying “hello” to a great sibling relationship and that we would go forward as friends.

I didn’t realize he was saying goodbye.  Not until later.  Not until after.  He knew he was saying goodbye, he’d been planning it all along, and I confess, that makes me angry.  I am so kicking his ass when I see him again in Heaven.  After I hug him of course. 

I no longer believe that time heals all wounds.  I believe our grief muscles get stronger from use and so grief becomes a little easier to carry, but it never really goes away.  It’s always there.  Lurking.  Behind a picture, behind a memory, a smell, behind a certain date.  Sometimes you know it’s there, just waiting for you.  Other days it pulls a “scare cam” and then you can only cry out. 

Next year I’ll be ready.  Next year will be one of his milestone birthdays.  He didn’t have enough of those. 

Some days, I really miss my brother.

All rights reserved by Vanessence

Posted in Musings, Personal

Musings

So.  I had such grand plans for today!  It’s the first business Monday of the month, of the year!  Back to homeschool for the kids and I.  Up early.  Get some cleaning and organizing done around the place.  Get that Christmas stuff back out to storage!

But no.  Just no.  Despite my efforts to go to bed early last night, (at which I was successful, yay!) I woke up after only a couple hours and was up for hours.  When the alarm went off, I had a screaming headache.  *sigh*  The weather’s been changing around here, which probably caused some of that, but still. 

I didn’t get to nearly half the things I wanted to today.  I suppose that’s what tomorrow’s for, right? 

I keep thinking of this quote I saw on a poster when I was little:

Today is the First Day of the Rest of Your Life.

I guess for me, I need to change that Today up there to Tomorrow, heh. 

I hope your Monday’s been better!

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Posted in Family Life, Personal

One by One

It started on the 7th.  My husband came home from work saying he feared he was coming down with something.  This scared us.  Earlier in the year, beginning of June, to be exact, he came down with a severe case of bronchitis and his coughing didn’t let up for a good 6 weeks, with continued bouts for 6 more.  With the way his company has been cutting back on sick days, this was not good.   We tried to be hopeful – maybe it’s not sickness but just allergies.

Friday the 8th he emailed me from work, stating that he was in fact, sick again.

After he came home that night, he spent the entire weekend feverish and coughing but managed to make it in to work on Monday.

Sunday night my son told me he didn’t feel well and he spent Monday-Wednesday in bed with a fever.

Monday night, I practically coughed up a lung and spent Tuesday-Thursday in bed with a fever.

My poor husband, sick himself, doing his best to take care of the rest of us – and really that’s a first.  He was just trying to hold out until his vacation started on Thursday.   I can’t think of a time when he was the well one and the rest of us were not. He’s asthmatic, so he always bears the brunt of sicknesses. 

Thursday, my daughter went down.  She put up a good fight, bless her warrior heart, but this cough and fever had her near tears.  She doesn’t do sickness well – I like to think because it’s so foreign to her.   We did our best to keep it from her, to stay away from her, no hugs or kisses, etc.  I guess short of a haz-mat suit, there was nothing we could do.

This thing hits hard and it hits fast.  You practically don’t even have time to wonder what’s going on before you’re curled up in bed, in a shiver then a sweat.  You don’t want to eat.  (I ended up not eating for over 2 days, pretty much the same with my kids.)  At one point, I could feel myself starting to freak out because I let my imagination run away with me.  I could hear this sound in my lungs, and in my fever, I imagined it sounded like an army of tiny clicky spiders spinning crinkly webs.  Shut UP, Brain!

Pain relief pills help a lot.  Menthol cough drops help a lot.  Vaporub is a beautiful thing, don’t knock that gem! 

Hot showers, lots of water, and even more sleep help a lot. 

Heating pads help a lot – those ribs get sore.

I think we’re on the upswing now though.  If what I’ve read is any indication, this thing has an average shelf life of 10-14 days.  If that holds true, we should be all clear between this coming weekend, and the weekend after. 

It’s no fun being sick on Christmas vacation.  But I guess in some ways, best to be sick then when you don’t have work or school obligations.

If you’re the praying type, prayers would be greatly appreciated. 

And I’ll be praying like crazy that YOU don’t get this thing.

Acute bronchitis | National Institutes of Health

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Posted in Daily Life, Personal

Updating …

So, my new(ish) computer finally arrived.  I have to say, so far so good.  It seems stable, and the wireless connection has been stable, too.  I’m just trying to get everything moved over.  You know how that goes.  *sigh*  *more sighing*

But, you know, those Daily Prompt things I was doing … I guess I’m a bit OCD about them.  So, I’ve ported over (thanks thumb drive!) the ones I was working on when my computer started dying a couple weeks ago.  I kept their original dates for consistency’s sake. 

Now back to my regularly scheduled game of trying to play catch up!

~Vanessa~