My brother has died. My emotions are all over the place.

I am sad he is gone. I am happy he did not suffer long.

It was only this past spring that he began to have problems – his lungs were filling with fluid and had to be drained. Too often. He was diagnosed with Mesothelioma – a result of the years spent in the military, in Vietnam, working on military vehicles insulated with asbestos. Having had a father whose job was installing asbestos insulation. Before the dangers of asbestos were known. When surely the father carried particles of asbestos fibers into our home on his work clothing. But mostly – the job in the military.

He had surgery – removing the lining of the lung and the cavity surrounding it. Which required breaking a rib. Apparently that rib was not shortened enough by the surgeons, and not long after the surgery, it began to protrude into his back, causing pain. Surgery causing pain and weakness. Scar tissue building in the esophagus, causing the need for a feeding tube.

A life changing radically in such a short period of time. He and his wife had been active, riding bikes, geo-caching, hiking in mountains. He buiilt a climbing wall for himself. They had been married for many years, almost always together, loving each other but more importantly, liking each other. Being partners in life as well as friends. The perfect combination.

Distance kept us apart from the time he was a pre-teen through adulthood. We saw each other rarely, and only in recent years were we keeping in touch with each other, because his wife and I exchanged emails. We were not really close as a result, but I loved him and I love his wife. I am sad that she no longer has him – as she said, “the love of my life”. I am happy that they had all those years together, and that during the last weeks of his life they had what she referred to as “good conversations”. I am happy he was at peace at the end, and slipped away quietly.

Emotions. Sadness. Happiness. Reconciling the comflicting feelings. Breathing deeply.

About Carol

I'm me - nothing unusual, just me. Widowed, 2 grown children who are my best friends, 1 dog, retired, loving being retired. I am woman, I am strong.
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25 Responses to Emotions

  1. Oh I am so sorry. 😦 But I read something recently that talked about how death, particularly as we age, becomes a sort of companion…following us or walking beside us. I haven’t lost any siblings (yet) and I sincerely hope I’m the first to go of our little trio..I’m the oldest, one would think that was fair…but one sibling works a very high stress job and stress is deadly. The other is retired and I suspect he’ll go on forever…active as you describe your brother and enjoying his life. My condolences at this difficult time. May you find peace. 😥

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cee Neuner says:

    Just breathe Carol. I am so sorry for your loss. I really got a sense of the emotions you are feeling right now. Take care of yourself.


  3. Jim says:

    I always wish that I had the right words and I almost always never do. I’m sorry to hear of your loss.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. ghostmmnc says:

    So sorry for the loss of your brother, Carol. May the remembrance of the wonderful life he led, bring comfort to you now. (((hugs)))

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So sorry for your loss.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Kathy says:

    Honoring all the emotions flowing through you, Carol. There can be so many feelings when a loved one dies…


  7. I am so sorry to hear this news. Even though you didn’t see him often it would be painful to lose a sibling.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. loisajay says:

    Carol–I am so very sorry.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m so sorry to hear this news.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I am so sorry to hear the news, Carol. It is a sad reminder of the tolls that chemicals have on humans and the environment. One day asbestos, another day lead, Roundup or emissions from coal fired plants. Enough cover ups and fake news about health hazards! One more death from manmade health hazards is too many. Our job is to make sure that our children and grandchildren don’t have to pay the consequences of our denial. Best wishes to you and your family at this sad time.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Robin says:

    I am so sorry for your loss, Carol. Sending you love and lots of hugs. ♥♥♥


  12. Loss. It is so powerful. My condolences.


  13. Carol says:

    Putting my feelings into words helps me deal with them – and reading your caring comments is even more soothing. I thank each and every one of you for being there.


  14. leendadll says:

    I’m so sorry. I’m thankful that you’re able to acknowledge your myriad feelings. I’m sending you whatever vibes you need, as you need them.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Jay says:

    I am so very sorry to hear this, Carol. What a horrible end to a good life! It’s good that he didn’t suffer long, so you have that as some small comfort, but I know it’s really hard when a sibling dies. Hugs. x


  16. Lisa says:

    It doesn’t really seem right to “like” this post, but your words are loving and we can feel the emotions. My heart goes out to you and your family at this loss. May the arms of Jesus wrap you in comfort and peace during this time. xoxox

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Laura says:

    I am so, so sorry to hear about your brother. I’ve dealt with the death of a parent but honestly? The thought of losing either my sister or brother makes me freeze up altogether. I’m awed by your ability to see the beauty of a life well lived. Blessings.


  18. Oh, Carol, I am so sorry for your loss.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Carol says:

      Asbestos is a material that used to be used for many things – in floor tile, as insulation. It is tiny fibers, land when breathed in (as one cannot avoid doing if exposed to it) it’s a known cause of Mesothelioma, a cancer of the lungs.


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