Tuesday, December 2, 2014

All My Love

“Grief is a room without doors – but somehow, with its tinsel and clichés, Christmas finds a way in.”
- Simon Van Booy -

I’d like to begin this month’s abundance of Christmas posts with a dedication to my brother who died spring 2011, which my long time blogging pals already know about. The grief of his passing isn't as profound anymore, but when this time of year comes along my thoughts turn to him more often. And my heart aches.

Steve and I were only 11 months apart, what’s known as Irish twins,
and we shared a very special bond.

I was thinking recently about a conversation he and I had a very long time ago about death and grief and moving on; way before we’d ever had the misfortune of experiencing such a thing.

What do you think it’s like when someone you love dies?” I asked.

He shrugged and said “I guess you’re heartbroken for awhile but you keep on living. And eventually you forget about whoever died.”

I did go on with my life because I must. He was right about that. But he was very wrong about the latter. You don’t forget. Ever.

Many Christmases ago with my two brothers. Steve is all the way to the left.

The song below is for my dear brother who introduced me to Led Zeppelin, his favourite band, when we were teens. His intention was to familiarize me with the wonderful world of rock music, and save me from the “shitty disco” (yes, he wasn't a fan) that was "contaminating" the world at the time. I hope that wherever he may be, he’ll be having a rockin’ Christmas this year.

I miss you every day, Steve, for the rest of my life. All my love to you...


Is there anyone you miss this time of year?

43 comments:

  1. How horrible it must be to lose a brother at such a young age, my two biggest were my mom, no one has ever loved me that much since, and my cat Sammi, as ridiculous as it sounds I have never loved a cat or dog so damn much and she loved me...
    Zeppelin looks so young there, very appropriate song...I'm so very sorry sweetie I hug you tightly

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    1. Thank you, Lorraine. This time of year we always think about loved ones that are not here to share this joy. And yes, pets, too.

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  2. Very touching, Martha. I had no idea you lost a brother so recently. I am so sorry. I love that you dedicated this post to him and I love that song :)

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    1. Thanks, Keith. I like to keep this blog upbeat, so I don't write often about these types of topics. But because it's Christmas, I want him to be remembered. This is one of my favourite songs from this band. I play it all the time when I'm driving, and it always brings my brother to mind!

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  3. Oh, super great post so sorry he is not with you anymore. Thanks for sharing this with us, though.

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    1. Thanks, Wonder Woman. It's much easier after a few years, but I always think about him. We really never forget.

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    2. I agree. I still remember the loved ones that I lost too.

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  4. I wasn't aware you had lost a brother, Martha ... what a beautiful, moving tribute to him. sniff

    great song ...

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    1. Thanks, Carolyn. I've mentioned it in the past, but not very often. It would be easy to miss. I prefer to keep this blog upbeat.

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  5. Oh, Martha, this post is a piercing knife to the heart. I have never lost a sibling, so I can't imagine what a hole that this leaves in your life. Of course, you could never forget your Irish twin. My brother Roy and I are only 14 months apart, and I would be devastated to lose him. Love the Santa photo ~ just precious, as are the black and whites. I miss my parents terribly, especially at Christmas because they loved it so. You do get on with your life, but you never ever forget. I ache with the loss too, but I always feel their love around me much of the time ~ I suspect you may feel Steve's too. Have a happy day, filled with great memories of your beloved brother!

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    1. It is very sad, Louise. I never imagined he'd be gone so young. You picture growing old with your siblings, and enjoying all the family happenings along the way. My dad is gone, as well, but he lived to 77; a much fuller life. And yes, you certainly do get on with your life. It's important to do that. But you never forget. I feel Steve around me all the time. We'll always be connected.

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  6. You most certainly never forget. If it were only that easy. I am glad it's not because I never want to forget those that have died.

    Thanks for sharing this part of your life, Martha. I know it is very painful. xo

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    1. Yes, you don't forget, and I'd never want to. Once the grief begins to subside, you can actually look back at the memories with a smile.

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  7. Martha, I'm sure that wherever he is, he is warm with your remembrance and smiling to his Irish twin!

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    1. He most certainly is! And he's shaking his head because even though I did grow to love rock music, I also enjoyed disco!

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  8. I find that as time marches on, every holiday becomes more and more bittersweet. Old photos too. And music. I never would have believed that was possible when I was young. Such is the way of the world, isn't it. Hugs to you today, Martha.

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    1. Thanks, Debra. And you are so right! I feel the same way. The holidays become more bittersweet as time goes on. In the short few years he's been gone, my brother has missed so many goings-on in our family. We don't notice how many things change/happen until we think about the loved ones that are no longer here and what they've been missing. Like you, photos and music triggers emotions. This song always makes me think of my brother. Always.

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  9. Oh, I am so sorry to hear this, Martha. You looked so alike as children too. Bright-eyed, cheeky grin (you don't look so different now, to be honest).

    Such a difficult time of year when the passing of a loved one is so prominent in your heart. Ugh. And you're right, the pain 'never' goes away.

    And I too hope Steve will be having a rockin’ Christmas this year.

    Hugs from Down Under and Off to the Side xo

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    1. Thank you, Wendy! We were very close from the moment I was born. As children, we were literally inseparable. Best buds from the start. I never imagined he wouldn't be around to grow old with. Life surprises you sometimes, and not always in a good way. It gets easier over time, but the holidays trigger that sense of loss.

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  10. A wonderful tribute to your brother. Sorry about your loss. May you keep his memories strong in your heart.

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    1. Thank you, Linda. Yes, always. I'll always keep his memory alive.

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  11. It's amazing how one sentence or thought can resonant so clearly over the years Martha. Irish twins, eh ! I will remember that now. Thanks for sharing and do enjoy the rest of this month!! No doubt you will!!
    Ron

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    1. I definitely will enjoy the rest of the month! Christmas is my favourite holiday of the year. We miss the ones that are no longer with us, and we cherish the memories of them, but we also have so much to be grateful for. And there is the living to celebrate...people that we are here with us. People that we love, and people that love us.

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  12. Steve would so proud of his 'twin' sister and all the good she does through her blog posts.
    Martha, this is a lovely tribute to someone who will always be close to you.
    I lost a brother as well who was four years younger than I. It was a long time ago and I think of him throughout the year and realize how life has changed without him near by.
    Now here's to a great new month of laughter and cheer!!

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    1. Thanks, Jim. I know about your brother from your blog. And yes, we think about these loved ones that we've lost all the time. But life goes on, as it should, and we embrace all the good things it has to offer. And there are many, many good things.

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  13. I know a few people who lost family members right at the holidays. They tell me things like Christmas aren't' the same after that.

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    1. It is true, Adam. My brother died right before Easter, and that holiday has never been the same. But life goes on, and it does get easier.

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  14. Oh Martha I am so sorry for your loss.

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  15. Oh Martha, what a nice post remembering your beloved brother.
    And I so agree with him about disco. I thought I was the only one who didn't like it!
    Love the photos of you as children, both so cute. xx (And your other brother was/is cute too!)

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    1. Thank you, Kay. He would have liked you just for disliking disco! Hahaha... He wasn't a fan of it. At. ALL. I really like Led Zeppelin; he did succeed with that. And this song always makes me think of him.

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  16. Ahhh!! I just read my comment! And I meant to say, your other brother was cute too, and must be cute as an adult also! Does that make sense?

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    1. Yes, it most certainly does! Not to worry. I understood what you meant. Yes, my other brother (who is the oldest of all of us) did grow to be very handsome. At least I think so :)

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  17. Nice tribute to your brother. Christmas is always a rough time for losses. My brother and I are Irish twins. We seem to be closer than regular twins.

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    1. I know what you mean, Red. Sometimes Irish twins are even closer!

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  18. Hey Martha....
    Your loss is still pretty recent.....golly, I know how you feel...
    Cheers to brothers lost.....but NEVER forgotten♥️
    Linda :o)

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    1. You certainly do know how I feel since you've lost a brother, too. We never forget, but this time of year we remember them even more!

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  19. Martha: I spent every Christmas with my mother until she passed away (50 Christmases). No matter how far away we were from each other, we got together for the holidays. I still miss her so often, but always at Christmas especially. She is with me though; I can feel it! Thanks for the wonderful post ... and ALL your wonderful posts. They are so special!

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    1. Wow, that is so special, Nancy! Yes, I imagine you miss her terribly this time of year. We always remember these special people when the holidays come along. And thank you for your lovely comments about my blog!

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  20. Oh I'm missin my grandpa who passed away the same year as your brother. Although he didn't leave us in Christmas but all my Christmases in childhood were spent with him. Then my aunt just last year, when family's Christmas was at her wake. She used to babysit me, she was like a second mom to me. You are right about moving on but really not forgotten, it still stings if you listen closely to your heart.

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    1. Oh, so true. It does sting when you listen closely to your heart. Well said! It sounds like you have wonderful memories with these loved ones. It's sad that they're gone, but we remember those special moments with them.

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  21. I just read your blog, sorry about the death of your beloved brother, I have a brother who was born in dec. 1946 and I born in May of 1948 we were pretty inseparable as little ones and even closer now as adults..I cannot imagine losing him I did lose our Mother young never to understand peoples comments when I was growing up I hate my Mom and all..I have missed her each and every moment of my life I truly have, it was my brother and me against the world had a baby sister 5 years younger never really knew her much still don't..The loss of a beloved sibling, mother and or father at any age is a big shocker, I send out my heartfelt condolences one never gets over the sting of it, never..I have met many women and men who lost their moms, dads and siblings and they have never gotten over it ever, they just put it in a place in their heart and mind to actually live a life..Hope you have some joy this holiday season, I don't do holidays well at all or my birthday the loss of my Mom took it all away from me, but I am happy for others and try to be good and nice to those who get so little of life and love and anything, it soothes my soul, ciao &luv!!!!!!

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    1. Thank you for this lovely comment. No matter how much time passes, our heart aches for those we've lost. This time of year is particularly difficult because we want to share these holidays with people we love. My brother has missed so much in the short period he's been gone, and I wish he'd had the chance to see it all. I never thought he'd leave us so young, but life surprises us in many ways...good and bad.

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