A good man…

I attended the funeral of a good man today…he was my brother-in-law for the last 15 yrs. He was a very common and ordinary man, but that being said – he was a very good man.

He died suddenly. We had no idea as we visited with him in his hospital room last Saturday that in a few hours he would no longer be with us. But, he knew. Of that fact, I am confident. You see, he was very bull headed and ornery when it came to doctors and hospitals. He hated them and everything they represented. He was very much into herbal remedies and believed in prayer. But he held little faith in doctors.

He also had it in his mind that he was going to die the same way his daddy did and at the same age. And that is almost exactly what happened. He was 72. 20 years ago, his dad was 72. Both were sudden and both would not go to the doctor, unless desperate! Well, early Sat. morning my brother-in-law had reached his point of desperation. He was told by a walk in clinic a day earlier that he just had pneumonia and bronchitis. NADA! He had already had at least one heart attack, unbeknownst to anyone, including himself.

We (his brother and I) witnessed his last cardiac event just after lunch on Saturday afternoon in that very same hospital room. Even then, as he awoke from blacking out and his heart stopped beating for 10 seconds, he rose up out of his hospital bed with his fist drawn back ready to knock out anyone that was trying to help him!

I loved him. He was a very loving & kind soul and always open minded and welcoming to those he met. He was very physically strong, something his brother (my husband) always admired about him.
His brother and he were not much alike. Raised more than a decade a part, my brother in law was very “social”. Everyone knew him and loved him. He would help anyone and was always running the roads. If he wasn’t running them as a truck driver then he was running them with his visits to friends, family and acquaintances. He couldn’t stay home for long and loved the outdoors.

My husband, (his baby brother) on the other hand is very much a loner, homebody, introvert and some might even say a bit “anti-social”. I love him. He too is a good man! He hates the outdoors unless it’s cold. He really prefers his recliner to any outdoor activities. His strength stems more from the emotional and spiritual side of things. And until today he hadn’t shed a tear for his brother even though he loved his brother immensely. Finally, after all the arrangements had been carried out and we said our farewells, I had the opportunity to hold my husband while he cried the loss of his best buddy. Until his older brother grew up and married they shared a bed. Big brother was replaced by a large teddy bear. Well, I got to be his teddy bear today.

Life is fleeting. We never know. I’m thankful that my husband doesn’t hate doctors the way his brother did and I’m trusting that if he ever has pain or discomfort that he is unclear about that he won’t ignore it as his brother did.

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Am I the common denominator?

Does this look like the face of a hateful person?

Does this look like the face of a hateful person?

If I am, I don’t want to be!  All the great blogs I read usually have one thing in common.  They are funny!  The bloggers that I follow have a great sense of humor.  So, where does that put me?  I don’t really consider myself a very funny person. I tend to take life too serious!  So, that being said – you may find this post too serious, but I’ve got to talk about it.  The subject?  Family estrangement!

We’ve had way too much of it in our families.  My husband and I share that situation!  My youngest daughter and I talked about it recently.  She thinks it’s “horrible” that we have so much division or estrangement in our families.  Is it horrible? And am I the common denominator? Is he the common denominator in his family?  And if we are, does that mean we have the power to change it…just by being more friendly and more patient with our other family members?  Can we just not “let things get to us” so much?

I envy those families that are “close knit” and seem to always get along so well.  I worry that because we aren’t so close knit, that I will spend my old age alone!  I don’t want to be alone when I’m old!

You may wonder why I’m talking about this today after not blogging for 5-6 months.  It’s my baby sister’s 46th birthday today – but we don’t speak and haven’t spoken since 2010.  (That’s our most recent period of estrangement, but not our only one.)  Yes, it was my decision to not speak with her because I refuse to subject myself to her demented form of abuse!  Nuff said!

Just one example, but all I can say is family division/estrangement began very early in life for me.  As a young adult, my mom and I had periods of “not speaking”.  (My decision, as well).  The others seem less disturbed by it then I do. (They rarely, if ever are the one to apologize – I am).  I go so long, and then for one reason or another – I decide to bury the hatchet and apologize even though sometimes I don’t feel like I am the one that should.  Oh well – I hate family estrangement!

Long story – short, I miss my sister a tiny bit (not alot).  She was born 16 years after I was.  I loved being her big “Sissy”.  We aren’t much alike.  Our philosophies/beliefs – the way we live etc; are not similar.

So, Happy Birthday, Tammy.  You won’t be getting a call from me today, but I still hope you have a great day.

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