Before new years, my brother asked me my point of view on family. Really he asked me what I thought made for a good brother. I have been thinking for an answer since that night and while I’ve not come to any conclusions or epiphanies, I can at least say something.
A sibling.. a brother , a sister is placed into your life from the beginning and like it or not their lives are wrapped around yours. Should the lives never intersect again, they are still bound to each other by virtue of their beginning. There is a knowing, an understanding of how we grew up that no one else could possibly obtain. I think that understanding creates a solid unbreakable bond. There is a knowing of self too, a knowing of blood. And that knowing reaches beyond me to those I literally share blood with. So if I know and understand my blood, I can’t help but know and understand some of theirs. No one else could ever know and that blood and bond makes one’s siblings most important.
While I have met many people in my life I consider my brother or sister, none will ever really be. In truth I am connected to all things……the rain, the air, the soil, all things, the gutter water, the pollution, the Spirit…sorry tangent…While I know I am connected to all things and thus brother and sister to all, it is not quite the same is it? different parts of the same whole.
I am not connected to other things like I am my actual blood. Perhaps this is a minor difference but for this life, it is serious, a real line is drawn. I am related to him and her very strongly and my love for them runs deep, back to my first memories in fact.
My brother’s question is for today though. What makes a good brother?….well brother I don’t know. I accept and love both of them for who they are, no conditions, no requirements. I don’t expect much either except for them to be true to themselves and their own hearts. I know my blood and so I know theirs, “there will be rain if God wills it”.
I have some hopes for them, some wishes. That we may communicate as best and as often as we can, that we keep strong and close our relationships, that we hold our family together when it is most difficult and when the responsibility for the holding is only ours. that we may be excellent aunts and uncles, teaching the children that which a parent cannot.
While we can always do better and sometimes much better, we do all right. We are close, we do love and I have an excellent brother and sister.