Today, November 24, is not just a date on a calendar. To many, it is Sunday. It could be an early celebration of Thanksgiving. To me and my family, it is a day we remember our brothers, plural! This date in 2019 marks the 25th anniversary of the loss of my oldest brother, Mike. It also marks the 17th anniversary of the loss of our brother, Pat. Eight years apart. What are the odds? I believe dates play a huge part in our loss and not all of them are coincidence.
The fact these two brothers died on the same date is an act of God. Our mother was still alive and this gave her one day to mourn the loss of her boys. Now that I am in that club of “parents who have lost a child,” I am grateful she only had one day to recall these losses. I know several who have lost more than one child and this is not the case. I pray for them to find some peace on those days of remembering.
This could have also been my brother Mike leading Pat “home.” Pat told me Mike had been next to his bed all night one night the weekend he passed from cancer. He said our father was outside his room during that time. Both our father and Mike had been gone for years. Mike had been gone for eight and our father had died twelve years earlier. Pat’s statement that they had both been there gave me chills and comfort at the same time.
I know there is a plan we have no control over, for the most part. Some of the actions are a result of free will but I am sure God is taking care of those as well. He is a forgiving God, I have no doubt. It was a reminder today at mass while discussing the choices we have that could have a lasting affect on our future. What we don’t realize is the affect it has on everyone else!
Today, I choose to remember all the good times and moments those brothers left us with. I know they are not alone in Heaven and are at peace and well. The things that were not good with their health have been healed. The pain they suffered is gone.
I wrote this poem after Pat died.
God’s Great Plan
Here we are again, a time for sharing and giving
And, as years past, this is a sad Thanksgiving
We are suppose to reflect as if this year were our best
As I lay another sibling down to rest
I don’t understand the plan our Lord has for us here
Because I’ve buried two people I hold very dear
In my eyes, at least, both were too young
To the rest of the world, their lives had just begun
As I spend this time of reflection to pray
To my Lord, my maker, I have only this to say
Lord, I’ve seen your work, and try to comprehend
What this suffering will produce on the other end
May the pain we’ve experienced over the years
Help all to understand and overcome their fears
Help them know this great “plan” of yours
Will lead them through much greater doors
It will make us strong and appreciate
What lies ahead for us through Your Heavenly Gate
As I look to Heaven with a heavy sigh
I know we are guarded by our angels on high
May they watch over us and help us to understand
So we, too, can be at peace with God’s Great Plan!!
Christina Herold Trueblood
As always, I cry because they are gone, but I smile because they were here.
#gonebutnotforgotten #angelsamongus #samedategone #thedashinthemiddle