Tuesday, February 5, 2019

REMEMBERING MY BROTHER -SMILING THROUGH THE HEARTACHE

Six years  ago this week
my brother, Charlie,
walked into the hospital ER
because he wasn't feeling well.

On February 5th,  2013,
 4:04 pm he left the hospital.
He didn't leave the way we hoped,
nor the way we expected.
He went to a different home
than the one he left that last Tuesday.

He developed a very rare cancer
that affects less than 1% of
cancer patients.  It is fast moving
and there is less than a 1% chance
of survival.

I  struggled trying to figure
out why this has happened.
Then a peaceful thought came to me.
Our little granddaughter,
Anna Bella,  who would be THIRTEEN now,
needed an Uncle
to keep her company.
A great-uncle.
Great in more ways than one.

Wasn't he a cute little boy?
We knew that last morning that his
time to be with us was to be
short-lived.
They put him on a morphine drip
and he gently drifted away
without pain.

What you don't know about
my brother is that he was a 
joker-He loved to make
people laugh.
He was the "smiliest" person
I ever knew and he
dearly loved a good joke.

You know, even in moments of 
blinding pain there are
sparks of laughter,
After we said our good-byes and 
gave him permission to go "home",
we were all sobbing.

I told him: "You are so, so loved here
and Mom & Dad
and our grandparents and 
uncles and cousins and family
are all waiting for you-waiting to
welcome you to Heaven".

My sister-in-law added...
"And Snow White".
What? I asked.
Maybe you read a different
Bible than I do cuz I don't
think Snow White is in Heaven.

Everyone in the room erupted
in laughter.
In the burst of laughter
my brother, Charlie,
took his last breath of
life on this Earth.
We knew then that he 
was free to go because
in spite of our sadness
there was one last smile for him.

I'm betting that right now,
up in Heaven,
he is setting our little Anna Bella
up to some mischief
just like  I my father used to 
set him up.

He passed so-so peacefully,
with nary a complaint.
You did good, Charlie,
very, very good.

Now I feel like I have a 
GUARDIAN ANGEL
that watches over me.

As a family, we have moved on,
walking different paths than the ones 
we were on and that is okay.
Happy memories keep us company
on those days when we mourn
our earthly loss.

Take a moment today to 
tell someone you love them.
If there are rifts in your family,
mend them while you have time
for tomorrow is never guaranteed
and there are no "do-overs"
when death comes to visit.

Have a wonderful, blessed day.
I hope YOU have a 
GUARDIAN ANGEL
in your life!


ps.  Snow White?  She was Charlie's cat.
your photo name

78 comments:

Harold Emery said...

Tears flow ... love snow whie! <3

Far Ago Farm said...

Hi Diana. Thinking of you today and your dear and treasured brother. Jane

Ramblings of a Retired Lady said...

Tears here too, but happy tears as well. Have a great day.

coffeeontheporchwithme said...

Bittersweet memories, Diana. I wonder where the idea of Snow White even came from? Favourite movie at the time? I've not even heard of a cancer that comes on that quickly, I'm so sorry for your family. You just never know, do you? -Jenn

Susie said...

Diana, I can still recall your brother's smile, from the picture you've posted before. That is funny about the cat. Hugs to you, I know you miss Charlie. Prayers for all of you today. Blessings , xoxo,love you, Susie

Sissie's Shabby Cottage said...

Diana, this is such a beautiful tribute to your Brother and as I read your words I couldn't help but think of my guardian angel Brother that watches over us too.
I know that your Brother left this earth knowing he was loved. There is no greater gift to give a family member than love, despite family drama and craziness it's the one constant that we all cling to.
I love your sweet memories and your precious words. God Bless you and your family.
hugs and love,
Sissie

Janice Kay Schaub said...

We lost Alex this week too. It will be 8 years on the 7th. We never forget our loved ones who have gone do we. I do not mourn her in a sad way though and know you are the same. It's just that we miss them so much. Thinking of you.
Hugs Janice

Debra She Who Seeks said...

A sad anniversary -- hugs to you today Diana.

WILLIE........! =^..^= said...

Well..who would have thought..I popped out first thing,
few things to do, busy~busy..went into Costa for my morning
coffee..met a few friends, bit of a floor show, if l don't
they'll think there's summat wrong with me..! :).
So, it's great to hear of someone who's a 'laugh'..two very
important things in life..Family and a good old laugh! :).
HeHe! or HaHa! or HoHo! That's what it's ALL about..
I always say though..(jokingly).."I'm not going to heaven,
what's the point..l shan't know anyone.."! :). HeHe! Bless!
Hope Mia Mama is'nt reading this..she'll be up their..
cooking/sewing/knitting for ALL the saints..ALL four of them..!
HeHe! Bless her..!

A lovely emotional read..which is good for an elderly Sicilian!
We live off of our emotions..good or bad..Family and friends,
are very important..and l was raised on one word..one word..
RESPECT..!

AND..do l have a guardian angel..? of course..it's just downstairs
now making my lemon tea..! :).
Oh! And..By the way..Pussy~cats 'DO' go to heaven...! 😼 🐾🐾🐾
❀ヅ❤♫ ¯\_(⊙︿⊙)_/¯ ❀ヅ❤♫

Gay Van Beek, Canterbury Cottage Designs said...

Diana what a loving and wonderful memory. People that can make us laugh and smile all the time are my favorite kind of people! I am so sorry you lost your brother in such a tragic way, but I bet he is up in heaven entertaining the masses as we speak. Love and hugs to you my friend.

WILLIE........! =^..^= said...

So..What is a Guardian Angel...???
A guardian angel is an angel that is assigned to protect and guide a particular person, group, kingdom, or country. Belief in guardian angels can be traced throughout all antiquity...
Who are the 7 guardian angels?
There are seven angels or archangels are given as related to the seven days of the week: Michael (Sunday), Gabriel (Monday), Raphael (Tuesday), Uriel (Wednesday), Selaphiel (Thursday), Raguel or Jegudiel (Friday), and Barachiel (Saturday)...
Connecting With Your Guardian Angels. The angels stationed permanently by your side are called guardian angels. ... They're not our deceased loved ones, who—while they can definitely act like angels—are called spirit guides. Our departed friends and family members, like all people living or deceased, have egos...

mxtodis123 said...

Oh, such bittersweet and loving memories. Sending you lots of love and hugs.

Lynne said...

Beautiful tribute Diana . . .
Shocking, fast acting cancer indeed.
Sending my caring for you today.

Sylvia said...

My heart and prayers goes out to you Diana. We do miss our loved ones that have gone on before us but know they're in a place of no sorrow or pain.
Blessings to you this week.

Kay G. said...

I do think I have a guardian angel and I think I must be keeping him/her very busy! Lovely post, Diana. x

Nancy's Notes said...

Oh my dear friend, what a moving tribute to your special brother. Praying God will comfort you today. Love and hugs.
Nancy

Stacey said...

This is such a sweet way to remember your brother, Diana. Thinking of you today.

Doreen@foxdenrd said...

So lovely Diana. We never stop missing those we love. In fact. I think as time goes on the pain subsides but missing them increases. Charlie sounds like he was a great brother and an even better person.

xxx

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

Our hearts never completely heal from the loss of those we love, but we are consoled by knowing how blessed we were to have had them in our lives. Remembering the laughter and happy times you shared is comforting and something that your dear brother would want.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

What wonderful memories you have of your brother. Yes I do have some like your guardian angel. We can smile as we remember them, they were a gift that we had in our lives like no other.

Debby said...

Such a sweet post. I remember when this happened. I think he sounds just like you. Wishing you peace as you remember him. Hugs

bj said...

Losing ones we love so much is beyond sad.
Love to you.....

Jeanie said...

Oh Diana, I'm so deeply sorry. He sounds like such a wonderful man. I'm grateful you could max out those six years but I know the loss must be heavy with sorry, even when peppered in with the more joyful memories.

I wish you all a gentle healing filled with love and only the good memoories.

Oh, and I think Snow White's in heaven, too.

Junkchiccottage said...

I am so touched to read this post this morning my friend. Loss is so hard but when someone we love goes out like Charlie did it gives us hope that death being inevitable it can be peaceful.
May he be resting in peace and hope he is skipping and telling little Anna funny stories and jokes in heaven. I know he will be at the front of the line of many already in heaven when it is your turn to enter some day. Just don't make any plans to head there just yet to see him!!!! I still need your earthly friendship lol!!!! Have a good day today. Just for a moment this morning I saw this big yellow ball in the sky show itself. It was so great for the 5 minutes it lasted. Oh how I miss the sunshine.
Hugs,
Kris

Linda @ A La Carte said...

What a beautiful ending. I lost my brother about 3 years ago and this makes me sad but also helps me smile. Hugs.

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

Laughter and tears...like life. Beautiful post, Diana! He sounds like quite a guy...xoxo

Creations By Cindy said...

Boo hooing this morning . But then i had a laugh ! Oh we must find humor in the midst of sadness . He sounds like a wonderful man that was truly loved. Hugs and blessings , Cindy .

Barbara said...

What a meaningful post. Thank you for sharing your brother's story with us. May the Lord continue to bless your memories of such a fine (and fun) man.

Lisa said...

You got my eyes sweating over here. Sweet little post. I love hearing he drifted away with a smile.
Hugs.
Lisa

bobbie said...

Hugs ~

Petie said...

Hugs to you Diana...

jack69 said...

This comment could be LONGGGG but, you just described a couple of my siblings. All six of them gone. But the memories, ahhh the memories. I cold just see Charlie, and yes Snow White, mine will be Ace. Love you lady this is, of course, one of the best!!!
Loving your thoughts,
Sherry & jack

Rain said...

Oh gosh Diana, though your post was sad, my gosh it melted my heart and gave ME a smile today. Thank you for sharing that. xx

Linda @ Life and Linda said...

Diana, losing a loved one is difficult enough. So sad and tragic Charlie left his family behind at such a young age. We never understand why. The memories will keep you smiling and close to your heart. Such sweetness seeing Charlie as a young boy. xoxo

Debby Ray said...

Oh, dear Dianna...what a beautiful tribute to your dear brother. What a precious soul he must have been...he actually sounds a bit like you!
I know the pain of losing a sibling so I do understand how deeply you miss him. But you what, the best part of this post is what you said at the end...about families being encouraged to mend the rifts and the hurt feelings. Life is so very short...AND precious! Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart through this post. I would love to give you a hug right now. ♥♥♥

Mac n' Janet said...

What a wonderful way to say goodbye. We could all use a guardian angel like that

Shirley said...

Diana, You brought tears to my eyes, but you made me think of my own family that are in heaven. The memories that can't be taken away from us. The fun and laughter spent with them. I pray for you every day because we both have or are caregivers for our other halves. We all have those special ones and it is hard to say goodbye. We just know that we have a guardian angel looking after us. Hugs and prayers from your Missouri Friend Shirley

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

Oh Diana, what a beautiful tribute to your smiling, fun loving brother. God bless you today as you remember him. You surely have a special Guardian Angel watching over you. Love, hugs and prayers are sent....

Beatrice Euphemie said...

Oh, such sweet sorrow......I truly believe our loved ones watch over us from the other side, always. And who knows.... maybe Snow White, too. Sending hugs and love xx Karen

Pamela M. Steiner said...

Oh dear Diana, I know how painful these farewells are. Our sweet son Matthew entered heaven almost five years ago. His cancer took four years to claim him...but thankfully we know where he is, and we know we will see him again one day. Perhaps he has met your brother and they are pulling pranks on people together. I'm sure there will be joy and laughter in heaven. Eternity is a long time to just sit around and do nothing but strum a harp. Sending you hugs today as you remember your sweet brother. Yes, our lives move on, but we never ever forget those precious ones who made us smile here below. God bless you and your family today.

Dewena said...

Diana, I remember that very difficult post you had to write six years ago. Thank you for writing here again about your beloved brother because you've done it with such love that it radiates throughout, the kind that makes me want to be sure my loved ones know they are loved and treasured.

Chatty Crone said...

I am so sorry about your brother. What a beautiful story!!! I hope I can go that fast and that peaceful. Sometimes cancer can be a lot more suffering. So in one way it was sad and another way a blessing. Life is confusing! Love, sandie

Vee said...

Oh his cat. ☺️ Leave it to you to crack everyone up. My belief system is a bit different from yours so, though I do believe angels guard us and guide us, I don’t believe that our loved ones become our guardian angels. I am glad that you have sweet memories of your dear brother. Yes, he was an adorable little boy.

Adam said...

It's in the Disney version of the Bible.

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

Brought tears to me today Di. You blessed this day with a smile and a tear. So many guardian angels awaiting me up there! Trying so hard to keep my hubby from being one of them.

happyone said...

A lovely tribute to your dear brother.

Ann said...

This brought tears to my eyes. A beautiful tribute to your brother

Terri D said...

I love the laughter from mentioning your brother's cat!! And that allowed him to slip away to his forever home in Heaven! What a beautiful promise we Christians have! I lost my younger brother to cancer, but his fight lasted seven years. A horrid disease. One day we will hopefully understand. Hugs!!

Cecilia said...

I forget your brother passed just days after mine (Jan. 31st). His was cancer too. It's an awful disease, isn't it? Hugs for you today. Hold onto your happy memories. Hugs,
Cecilia

Michele said...

I haven't been on in so long = and for that I am truly sorry....stopped in for a visit and am bawling my eyes out. Oh, sweet Diana, you sure have an amazing way with words.

You make me laugh and cry within moments of each - God bless you and your whole clan. You are such a special gal. <iss you. Hugs.

♥♥♥

Regine Karpel said...

Hugs. Praying.

Theresa said...

Sending you a big 'ole HUG and lots of prayers. Cherish the happy memories of your Brother and yes, he was the cutest little fella. HUGS!

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Love, hugs & prayers for you and your family at this time. You gave a beautiful tribute to your brother and I do believe that Snow White greeted him when he arrived at his new home.

FlowerLady

Brenda Pruitt said...

I either recall when he died or you writing about him. But I don't recall Anna Bella. How did I manage to miss that? You all gave him a proper send off. (I think I'm reading too many British-based novels).
Brenda

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

Lovely memories of your brother. I love the name Snow White for a kitty. Your brother is dancing for joy in heaven :-)

Pam Jackson said...

And for a min there I thought you were going to leave us hanging with the Snow White thought! Thank you for clearing that one up. So sorry for you lose. I am struggling really bad with the dead of my mom. She had a long life, she was not really ill with anything like cancer, I felt she had more time to be with us but things like you did not turn out like we thought they would. For that I am struggling really bad. Thank you for sharing your story.

Susie Swanson said...

Tears are flowing. What a beautiful, touching tribute to your brother. I just love you so much for this and you are so right on about mending fences while we can. Have a Blessed day my friend.

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Diana,
What a touching tribute to your much beloved brother....
I feel that my Dad is my Guardian Angel as I have felt his presence for the 32 years since he passed.....I am sure he is making your precious grand daughter laugh and smile...
Hugs,
Deb

Shari Burke said...

I'm so sorry you lost your brother. It's good that you find comfort in the happy memories.

Carla from The River said...

A beautiful post my friend. It is 5 years since my grandma passed, January 22. It is something on how the day of.. you get a feeling. My grandpa was my best friend growing up. He passed December 5, 2005. I still feel something each and every December 3rd.. that was my last day to talk to him, the entire week my thoughts go to him, memories and more.
xx oo

Love to you,
Carla

Shirley@Housepitality Designs said...

Your brother sounded like he was a truly amazing man. I am sure he is your Guardian Angel.

Missy George said...

I remember that sad time..Hugs to you...xxoo

Donna said...

Brothers are special and yours was one of the best.

Cranberry Morning said...

What a nice tribute to your brother, Diana. And it doesn't seem possible that it was that long ago. BTW, I fully believe in guardian angels and God being lots closer than we sometimes think. It sounds like your brother has a fun and loving spirit, just like you, Diana. God bless you.

Art and Sand said...

Your brother sounds like quite a guy. But then again, you're quite a gal!!!!

Karen Ann said...


What a beautiful post, Diana - Clearly two apples from the same giving tree...

Rita C at Panoply said...

Diana, what a wonderful tribute to your brother. I just can't imagine what it will be like when a sibling of mine passes. My mother's passing was 12 years ago the same week as your brother. I revel in seeing little signs that I consider God winks from my mom around the anniversary. I hope you saw some too. ♥

by JFM said...

A lovely tribute to your brother.
He sounds like a person who would be wonderful to know.

Hugsxxx

Leslie Harris said...

Diana what a beautiful tribute to your brother. Yes, I know in the bottom of my heart that he is with your niece. And you will see them when you cross over smiling and welcoming you with all their love. I loved hearing about your brother's sense of fun and I know your pain of loss. Sending you love.

xo
Leslie

Sarah said...

Beautiful post, Diana. Your brother's sense of humor makes me smile. Yes, we never know what tomorrow brings and must live for the moment. I try to remember that each day. Sending you a big hug.

Marilyn @ MountainTopSpice said...

Such a shocking way to lose your precious brother Diana, and yet such sweet memories you shared of him. Smiles and laughter always help to brighten the sadness of a loved one's passing, and of course I'm sure he would have laughed along with you at the Snow White joke! So hard to lose such a precious brother, but wonderful that you have such sweet and special memories of him to share! Blessings and hugs :)

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Red Rose Alley said...

I'm sorry you're missing your brother, Diana. This is a really nice post to remember him by. Such a cute little boy. Sending a big hug to you.

~Sheri

Melanie said...

What a beautiful tribute to your brother...anniversary dates are so hard. I'm so sorry for your loss. {{hugs}}

Butterfly 8)(8 Bungalow said...

So beautifully told. xoox Su

Lucille said...

Diana, I remember reading this when you first posted about your brother's passing. I want to add that I'm sorry for your pain although I believe that your amazing faith in our Lord sustained you and keeps on sustaining you. That is such a sweet picture of him. You must have so many beautiful memories of growing up together. xo

Ronda@islandmother said...

I’m sorry for your loss Diana. Death is a horrible reality...my dad went quickly and unexpectedly and with little or no pain.... time hasn’t really softened the loss... it has however defined life for me...I see clearer than ever what matters to me. Thanks for your comments on my blog. Hugs to you.

Busy Bee Suz said...

It's so very hard to say goodbye to those who we love and cherish. This post made me tear up (thinkiing of all my people who've moved on) and also smile. Snow White? That's just the best. Big hugs and love to you my sweet friend. XO