I’m funny about grief. Somewhere along the way I learned if it isn’t your close person, you can’t claim the sadness as your own.
I’ve been hesitant than to talk about our family’s recent loss. My husband’s cousin died last week and the old cliche that the world has lost its light has never felt less cliche.
I hesitated to share here because his story, their story, is not mine. We are devastated with sadness here, but as usual I have felt unentitled to it.
Then it hit me; when someone like Brian dies, everyone feels it deeply, because that is how he lived: affecting everyone deeply. So, I thought I should share. Because, if you weren’t one of the lucky ones to know him, you should.
I met Brian when he was a young boy. I’ve been around a while and he was of the younger crew of cousins. The Husband gave me some Intel on Duchenne MD before the family party at Brian’s parents’ house, so that I wouldn’t be caught off guard.
It turns out, I was caught off guard when I met Brian because he was just a typical tween boy, cute, funny and even a little sassy as all kids his age are apt to be. The thing that strikes me most about that meeting though was that he was surrounded by other kids his age and they were acting as if there was nothing at all different about Brian. Just goof-ball eight or nine year olds having fun at a party.
There was no pity or sadness, because Brian didn’t live that way. That’s the thing about him, Brian lived more fully and vibrantly than most anyone I know. He was constantly surrounded by friends and cousins and lately nephews because people just wanted to be in his space. He was smart, and funny and welcoming and warm and when he smiled you could actually feel it in your soul.
He talked to my kids like peers and always knew what we were up to in our little world and would always ask about it. He just made family gatherings better simply by being who he was. I suspect that is true of any gathering that he attended. Brian made the world better. It’s that simple.
Brian’s loss is not mine, like it is his mom’s or dad’s or brothers’ or sister’s. I tried not to claim the grief so deeply. But when someone touches your life like Brian touched all of ours, it’s impossible not to feel the loss.
We’ll miss you so much, Brian. I hope all the movies in Heaven are King of Film approved.
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