Monday, November 26, 2012

Brothers and Sisters.

We were honored to have Thanksgiving at our home, again this year.  Continuing with our Annual Thanksgiving Evening Ping Pong Tournament.  Often, our life is full of Coach Style Traditions... which is not necessarily a complaint, more of a 'that's just the way our cookie has crumbled'.  Ping Pong is a tradition from my family.  In our home, we kept a Ping Pong table up in the basement for months at a time.  We would have friends over for all night tournaments or just played us four.  Everyone could usually beat mom.  No one could EVER beat dad (which was par for the course with any game we ever played, ever.)
For the second year in a row, my brother did not attend Thanksgiving.  He was having a bad day.  Unfortunately, he seems to have many bad days. I'm sure... at this point, his absence at events goes largely unnoticed.  People are aware, he is uncomfortable with crowds... and honestly, our big amazing extended family is always a crowd. 
This year, his absence was not unnoticed by me.  After all this time, I should be used too my brother's illness.  But this Thanksgiving, the void of him, felt glaring. 
I often watch Coach and his siblings, with pure awe.  They are incredibly blessed to have each other.  To have five brothers and sisters, be so in-tune with each other is a gift.  Being within their presence, is almost like a television show.  They are honestly, each other's best friends.  They are Tru-ly as amusing, as they seem.  They sparkle around each other.
The loss of my brother, to schizophrenia, is an amputation to my family.  We are still technically a functioning unit but we have lost a limb.  We can still feel the phantom pains, of it's presence... but we are completely unable to walk through life, without a significant (if not totally debilitating) limp.
I missed my brother, all day on Thursday.
I missed him, celebrating his god-son's birthday.
I missed his old humour.
I missed whispering to him, about our parents.
More than anything, I missed him at the Ping Pong table... he most certainly would have taken The Golden Paddle Crown, from Coach.   
 

I hope my three children, grow to be like Coach and his siblings.  I hope they become tru friends.  I hope they annoy/seriously amuse each other with daily mass test messages.  I pray they consider vacationing together fun and not a chore.  When they leave the house for a drink, or run out of gas, or need help carrying something heavy... I hope they are each other's first phone call.


Above all...
I hope they always have each other.
It is much to painful, to not have.

8 comments:

The Page Turner said...

During the ping pong tournament I kept thinking of a story about Joel. One night, early morning after midnight we heard Joel and two friends in the basement. When I checked on them they were taking the ping pong table apart. They wanted to play and decided to take it out to the breezeway so they did not wake us. They managed to get it apart and out. They played ping pong until morning. I would wake and hear the ball being hit. I did not mind it.
I missed him too TS. I wish the two of you could joke about how he always slept on your floor on Christmas Eve. Just to make sure you did not get to the stockings first. I wish you could talk about Friday night pizza night. And tell Budget Boy jokes. I wish her and Coach could have a fierce competition every Thanksgiving for the Golden Paddle!
Today was a terrible day with him. Found myself asking God a few times what we are doing here. Not having fun!

The Mrs. said...

I don't really know what to say. I wish I had words to bring comfort, but I don't. What I can offer is this: please know that Joel is always in my thoughts and prayers, as are those that love him so fiercely and loyally.

Anonymous said...

That is a sobering read,I surely take for granted that my family is always there for the good and the bad, that my siblings are my best friends (lame).Like the Mrs.I have no clue what to say, but you are a sister to me(said it before)we have memories to share and enjoy listening to your memories with Joel. And I promise you will be the first one I call when I run out of gas from now on.

Coach said...

I am very thankful for both sides of my family, we are lucky enough to see each other all the time, and enjoy it. I could not imagine the loss of one of my siblings, and the stuff TS's family goes through is so difficult. I truly wish the best for their future.

Coach said...

I am very thankful for both sides of my family, we are lucky enough to see each other all the time, and enjoy it. I could not imagine the loss of one of my siblings, and the stuff TS's family goes through is so difficult. I truly wish the best for their future.

Flag Girl said...

This breaks my heart. 💔
I don't know what I would do without my siblings. And I can only wish that my boys will also have a close relationship into adulthood. We can never replace your childhood memories, but we have many new ones to share with you....
Remember that time when my Aunt thought you were my boyfriend...........

Tru Stories said...

You're right Flag Girl... I do feel better, thinking about being your boyfriend.

The Page Turner said...

Flag Girl's comment made me cry. I'm serious. Nice memory to share.