These past few weeks have been a whirlwind of activity… of company coming to stay, (and go) and the constant strain of the overly emotional, overly tired and the subsiquent drama that always follows a death in the family. Last Tuesday my DB lost his brother. He was just 47 years old. DB was the daily primary caregiver and closest confidant of his brother- who spent nearly a decade fighting for his life against the horrors of such an insidious disease as Cancer. I decided against posting about this, as it happened, partly due to privacy concerns but primarily because the last thing in the world I wanted to blog about was the real life struggles of my family and I.
However, with the house finally empty and the funeral come and gone, we are faced today with beginning a new chapter... one that we've coined "the new normal"... whatever that may be... and so it is only now, having made it out the other side that I feel the pull to write of what has transpired, as one would stop to look back at the accident they narrowly avoided, or the charred remains of a fire, I want too pause and reflect…
While my heart hurts at the loss of such an individual, my focus these past weeks has been to be a source of strength for my DB as he navigated his way through the logistics of arranging a funeral, holding his family together, writing obituaries and eulogies, and on top of it all trying to find a balance between the pain of knowing he'll never see his brother again and the acute relief of knowing that his friend, at last, had been set free…. Free from the suffering, free of having to stoically and bravely endure horrible pain and having to stare death in the face, every, single day.
I have never been so proud of my DB as I have been this week. He was gracious, firm, resilient, and compassionate, he pulled the world together when it seemed bent on falling apart and in end sent his brother out with as much class and dignity as was befitting of such a man. The funeral was absolutely beautiful. Loads of white flowers, green ferns and candles filled a stage, a mahogany casket fitted in gold at its centre- within, a man wearing a dark blue Armani suit, crisp white shirt, and a gold striped tie...a live violin and harpist…hundreds came to pay their respects and listen to my DB graciously thank each and every single nurse and doctor, image tech and administrator by name- all the people that helped his brother outlive his original prognosis by more than seven years.
My DB happily and proudly did his duty to his brother, and I did mine by him.
Through it all I had to try and keep my own emotions, opinions and reactions firmly in hand, which is something of a superhuman quality in my books...and one which I’ve never quite mastered. I played host, baked cookies and even wore high heels five days straight....lipstick too. My DB's job has essentially ended but mine has just begun. Behind every great man is a great woman, they say. I hope I am good enough to help my man heal and to support him as he picks up the pieces and clears off his desk to begin this new path of his life... the new normal.... whatever that may be.