I had a sibling. I liked him a lot, but he didn’t last very long. Plenty of people still scratch their heads over that one wondering what they could have done, asking the usual questions people ask when a friend dies of causes related to substance abuse, all questions without answers. I don’t. I know I did everything in my power and out of the experience I learned that 1) I’m not god, 2) everyone will live his/her life, 3) my life is my job, 4) logic is not the most powerful force in the universe.

Out of that ONE brother, I got three sisters. When my brother died from the multitudinous complications of alcoholism — in this case he bled out of his, well, never mind — his friends rallied round each other (and me, though I was a thousand miles away). One of my soon-to-be sisters organized a party. Another attended the party and in the video posted on my brother’s memorial Facebook page, I saw she was the only one who cried. The third is the little sister of one of my best friends from high school, and one of my brother’s friends.

Our relationships are very sibling-esque. Sometimes we bug each other. Sometimes we have to talk things out. We laugh, reminisce and talk politics. Very, very, very often we are shoulders for the other and a listening ear. I love my sisters very much and sometimes we look up at the sky and say, “Thank you Kirk.”

Without him, we wouldn’t even know each other.

The featured photo is two of my sisters and my “sister-in-law,” the great woman one of my brother’s best friends married. We were all at the Calhan Paint Mines on Halloween several years ago. Connie, my “sister-in-law” and my sisters, Mary Ellen and Lois. This photo ought to be an album cover. My third sister hates having her photo taken.

9 thoughts on “Sibling???

  1. A very moving and bitter-sweet story, Martha, with a ray of hope that’s clearly a true light in your life. I’m so sorry your brother came to such a tragic end, but it’s heart-warming to see that Kirk left you with three more siblings and that you all have so much to thank him for. Thank you for sharing your special story with us. 🙂 ❤

    • Thank you, Alli. The way I see it, there’s no point dwelling on what didn’t happen. I live in what has happened. Not long after he died I dreamed he came to see me in Death Valley. Seriously. He said, “I’m sorry Marthann. I just couldn’t take it any more.” And he hugged me. I think that’s what happened. I miss him, but that can’t change anything. In a way, it’s a privilege to have the chance to love someone like I loved my brother. ❤

      • Oh my goodness, that’s so touching, and amazing too, if Kirk came to you in a dream to say goodbye. I’m all choked now. ❤ That must have helped in some way to come to terms with your unimaginable loss. You seem to have a very sound way of looking at it, and they do say it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. Bless you, Martha. ❤

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