Monday, November 22, 2010

On Death

It is around the 2nd anniversary of the death of my brother Toby, and in a few weeks it will be the 12th anniversary of my father's death, and a few weeks after that (one month and one day to be precise) it will be the first anniversary of my mother's death.

I'm finding it strange really, in analyzing how each of these people's deaths impacted me so differently. With my father it was a deep pain and I withdrew greatly for nearly a year after he died. He was my best friend, and while it is cliche', no matter what, he was always there when I needed him-no questions asked. His presence was what I missed the most.

With my brother it was a very different sadness. Given our vast age difference, I did not know him nearly as much as I would have liked to. My dad always kept me updated on how Toby's life was going and that was the main connection. After dad died, Toby stayed a few days and I got to know him a bit better, and we carried on correspondence on a sporadic basis for a couple of years, only to have it drop off. What really hit me though, was the feeling and realization of "wait a minute, I have six other siblings, and Im the second youngest, and will I experience this several more times?" A bit of a selfish reaction, but honest. Losing a sibling is not like losing a parent...a sibling's death is more like a loss of history or like in the movie the Dark Crystal when those old guys start to disappear and something is lost from the world. It is a loss of a friend, of someone who saw you at your best and worst, and fought with you like no one else, a person who shares family memories with you...and different ones that are so nice to know.

Losing my mom...well...that is still a work in progress. I have had a year of insane personal growth, and have started working towards several personal goals. I have also come to a place of balance within my life that I have never had. I think the best way to sum up losing my mom is a profound sense of "what a waste"... all the years and moments that were wasted between us that can never be recovered, all the things I never learned about being a woman or being a mom, or about who she was as Jacqui-not just "my mom".
That is what I regret.

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