Thursday, March 05, 2009

Growing up after he's gone

This is a tribute of sorts to my brother Tim who lost in his life in a car accident on March 8, 2003. I have written about it here as well, but wanted this post to remind me of the memories we created as kids and that for me bring laughter despite the sadness.

One of the disappointments of losing a younger brother when he's just twenty-four is that some shared memories become lonely ones. Like when we used to ice skate in our slippers on the carpeted living room floor as a couple. And of course we always spent more time pretending to be the couples who got tripped up and fell or were spinning too much and hit the ground at a dizzying rate. Laughter and giggles always came after. And then there was the shameful practice of imitating those poor saints at our local church. Poor Mrs. Feldges who warbled her elderly voice along with the rest of us. We would pinch our necks, give the skin a little shake and off we would sing in falsetto screeches. Shameful stuff, but always more laughter. Or we would re-enact the completely opposite ways two different women would wipe their lips after sipping from the communion cup. Mrs. Priscilla Wallace, a dainty dear lady always brought out her dainty lace-edged hanker-chief and would carefully dab at small spots around her lips. Meanwhile Mrs. Pruitt, a lively lady would simply take her arm and wipe her mouth with her shirt sleeve. We often hid smiles as we watched this weekly activity making sure we got the act down pat for later play.
And of course who hasn't pretended to have the Lord's Supper, replete with grape Kool-aid and bread or crackers. Prayers would be offered up with references to other church members and hymns sung with gusto. Finally the moment would come to take the elements and we would indeed "drink ye all of it".
Then there was the moment when we turned cartwheels and did handstands and flips in the living room when we heard that we were going to Disney World with our cousins. Oh the excitement and the waiting for March break to come.
We also endured the annual first day of school pictures where laden down with copious amounts of school supplies and fancy new clothes we would have to smile and pretend to enjoy ourselves. Some pictures are quite memorable with Tim bent forward laughing hysterically at who knows what.

I imagine that when Tim passes Mrs. Feldges in the hallways of heaven, surely he must be holding in the smiles and giggles of a time long ago when she unwittingly gave him much to laugh over with the older sister who should have known better.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous10:06 AM

    What would we do without our memories from the past to keep smiles on our faces? How many of us have read this and gone back in our minds to dancing with our siblings? In my case, my sister and I disco'd down with our Dad to "Disco Duck"...ahhhh, good times.
    There are times I hated having a sister but there are so many more times that I wonder - where would I be today without her? Siblings always pull through when you need a quick cover or back up. While my sister may have picked on me a lot...she wouldn't ever let anyone else pick on me. They'd have to deal with her if they did and I don't think too many people wanted to deal with her! I imagine it was something of the same for the you and Tim. Thank God for giving us siblings, childhood, laughter and the ability to remember all the things that your sibling can't.


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