Dancing, eating rich foods and spending time with those he loved were some of my little brother’s favorite things to do. He delighted in the warmth and fun of the winter holidays. New Year’s was his favorite. That is one of the reasons why I’ve been seeing him everywhere these last few hours.
The other reason is not so simple… or happy.
If you’ve been reading Pagan Culture for a while, you already know that my little brother died in a car accident last February. The recent Metro-North train derailment, in New York, brought back some difficult memories. The pain I felt the day I saw my baby brother covered in cuts and bruises squeezes my heart again and again. I remember thinking, Twenty-six is just too young. I remember sobs that wouldn’t stop, heartache that wouldn’t go away, a sense of loss that lingers… I remember all that, and I feel a world of hurt for the families who have to go through the same.
It’s very late right now; almost three in the morning, I think. I’m exhausted, but I can’t sleep. I picked up one of my favorite comfort reads, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. The story helped. It took me to a different place, and it gave me more than a few soothing words:
“I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.” If there was trouble somewhere, you could bet your last cent that Gregory Guerrero was in the thick of it; and probably grinning like a lunatic. It was one of the things that made me love him more—we got each other.
What Dumbledore said to Harry touched my heart, too. “You think the dead we loved truly ever leave us? You think that we don’t recall them more clearly in times of great trouble?”
“Prongs rode again last night... You know, Harry, in a way, you did see your father last night... You found him inside yourself.”
There is a silly grin on my face. I wonder if it is him smiling or me. Hm... the bit of mirth probably belongs to both of us. I believe in the message above. He will never leave me, so today we grin.