Today I am Older than my Older Brother
Such an odd feeling...
“I am now older than my older brother…..” I keep saying it over and over in my head. Daniel died two weeks before his 35th birthday. Time goes by; it is five years later — I plan to make it to my 35th birthday.
I don’t know how to feel. My middle brother surpassed Daniel’s age two years ago. We both were in shock of the occurrence, not knowing what to think or how to feel. Daniel has always been our older brother who knew things and would teach us. He always seemed to have the answers. Now I am as old as he was when he decided to end his life.
I sit with my Remembrance candle as I contemplate these feelings. There is little else I can do. I am sad and depressed most of the time because of my brother’s death, but this experience is different. It’s my perception that is in question. If Daniel had the answers and he chose suicide, what else was he wrong about? Do I believe things just because an older person said them, so, therefore, I should believe it? I don’t think I’m that nieve, but I now question everything.
I get a whiff of frankincense from the candle burning. It quickly reminds me of being in church with my family as a little girl. I’m not fast enough to bury that memory and now come the tears, again. I am thinking of my life, before.
This thought of being older than him upsets me on all levels. There is a pit in my stomach. Again. (Does that ever go away??) It just reminds me of the hole that is in my heart. We were going to go through life together, leaning on each other for help when we needed it, celebrating life’s accomplishments. Now there is just emptiness. I don’t have the support I depended on from him. It’s only now I realize how on my own I am. That big brother comfort has disappeared. A bubble has burst that I didn’t know existed.
I dare not mention this to my parents. I’m sure they know, I don’t want to be the one to remind them that life goes on. I will age and create more memories. Daniel will stay young forever.
I thought writing about this small experience would make me feel better. I do not. I know many of you can relate, and that makes it a little bit more bearable.
Love and light can only shine if there is darkness to compare to.