Sunday, May 8, 2011

Brother's Day

Now that Lynda is gone, it's easy to count Mother's Day out as one of those artificial 'Hallmark' holidays, especially because it's also one of those days when I always have to work at the restaurant.  Now, on this day I am quite naturally thinking of Lynda, but I am also thinking of my brothers.

I think of Lynda often.  I think of her when I see my hands, when I hear my sigh, when I look in the mirror. I talk to myself the way that she did, knowing, now, what that conversation is about.  My blue eyes seem to have faded just a shade of late, now more than ever resembling Lynda's soft grey-blue eyes.

What's missing, though, is the contact, the talk, the reassurance that it--whatever it happened to be at the moment--would be alright.  I think it's safe to say that we never grow too old to be reassured by our mothers, and if there is any one single thing that makes us regret their absence it would be that.

It's a complicated emotion.  I miss her taking care of me long after I needed taking care of, but I also miss taking care of her, long after that care was needed.  I try to substitute for this with my Hospice work, but it is to be expected that it is just--not the same.  My contact with Mr. B. has been limited of late, not just by my schedule, but also by his reluctance to interact.  Then again, the volunteer work was never intended to be anything like what I shared with Lynda.

In the years since she's been gone, sharing time with my brother Stephen has helped close the gap considerably.  Our (nearly) weekly lunches give us the time and opportunity to talk about life at the pace it develops, slowly, instead of in big gulps at rare moments.  I see in his hands, feel in his eyes, and hear in his sighs the same vision of Lynda as my own.

It is, of course, a variation on a highly personal theme. David is another important manifestation of  this phenomenon.  Though he is more distant physically, our almost daily interaction via the net has drawn us closer than we've been since we were boys.  I know that he--like Stephen and me--thinks of her a lot and that sees her regularly in his daily life.

So, while I mourn the absence of Lynda and hold fast to the hope that Billie will be here for another year, I have to come to terms with what this day might mean for me in the future.  It's not an artificial holiday unless we make it so.  In fact, since I need look no further than either of my brothers for my reassurance and that sense of continuity that I need, I guess I ought to start calling it Brother's Day. 

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