Remember and Celebrate

August 9, 2014

Something profound . . .

There is something profound about being the only one left in one's biological family of origin.

Some years I think about it more than others, but this past week I have very aware that nine years ago my brother and I spent our last day together.  It was August 5,2005 - two months and 27 days before he would get LOST  in the Montana Mountains and die of hypothermia before they found him.

And when I visit his family in Montana, he is not there where he is supposed to be.

Instead, his hat hangs on the wall.

Billings trip

A good friend suggested I was more aware of it now that both of my parents are gone.

And my pondering led me to be more acutely aware that while I am surrounded by my  own family now and many nurturing friendships, no one alive knows me "when . . . ."

Rayna Vaught Godfrey, PhD, a licensed psychologist says:

"...there is a part of ourselves missing after the death of a sibling.
Such a death leaves a seemingly unfillable hole, 
both within  us and within our families.
This is magnified for those 
who lose their ONLY SIBLING
and no longer have someone 
who shares their histories
who can reminisce with them
and can validate their family narratives."

Last night someone asked me how I felt about that.

I said mostly sad.
And glad I had a lovely last day with my brother.

And it seems important to honor this truth by sharing it here.

And inviting you to remember it with me by reading about the last day I spent with my brother, Gordon Eugene Longenecker.  CLICK HERE

Linking with 
Barbie Swihart and The Weekend Brew.
Lisha Epperson and Give Me Grace Community

 

 

 

 

14 Comments

14 responses to “Something profound . . .”

  1. Nathan says:

    Hi Carol,
    Just wanted you to know that your series on recalling the accounts of Gordon’s passing touched my heart. What struck me most was how — in the midst of all the pain and sorrow — how you and your family pulled together to completely trust in God in the face of the difficulty of such a loss. It’s a testament to your strength and character, which I admire.

  2. Lisa notes says:

    What a beautiful truth to honor. Both my parents left the same year (2010), and it has left me feeling odd. I still have my siblings though. But now I sit here and ponder how that will feel if I’m the last one standing. Someone will be. Thanks for sharing this Carol. Yes, it is profound.

    • lisa, I remember my grandmother being the last in her family of 10 children. And how lonely she felt. It was hard for her. Most of my closest friends are 10-15 years younger than me and I tell them I will not be the last one standing – at least i pray so!
      thanks for visiting.

  3. I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your heart with us. This is a great reminder that each day is precious because we never know when it will be our last with someone. Blessings.

    • carol says:

      thanks for visiting Heather. Yes, each day a gift to be entered into, for we don’t know do we. Not a morbid thought but one that is important to remember as we live in the present.

  4. Donna says:

    Carol this makes me SO glad I can remember Gordon along with you. Such a character; I have to smile and kind of shake my head with pleasure as I think of his charm and humor. Wish I could have seen you as kids together!

  5. Joanne Viola says:

    A beautiful post! It made me realize what our own parents experience with the passing of each sibling. And what I may one day experience as I have only one brother. Thank you for sharing this moving post. May the memories you hold close bring you comfort. Have a blessed Sunday!

    • I was so dreadfully clueless About what my mom went through when she lost her sister and brother. She never really told me. I wish she had. Their generation didn’t say much about these things. I have been open w my kids for that reason.

  6. thank you for going there this evening, Carol. so poignant, so thoughtful. i’m a bit choked up somewhere in there deep …

    • carol says:

      Hey sweet friend thank you for sharing in this with me tonight. We are spending the weekend w dear friends. He was my worship pastor and
      became my brother during those dark days. His wife is one of my dearest friends. This visit is good timing for me.

  7. Cathy says:

    Thank you for sharing this very important time with us. I grieve with you and know the immense hurt and longing for that personal touch of their physical life here on earth. I have lost my only son and my oldeest brother…both to sudden accidents just months apart. I am so thankful you had that last day with him…God has allowed that sweet memory. I love you sweet friend! Many blessing to you. I am your neighbor at Weekend Brew. 🙂

    • carol says:

      cathy,

      Two profound losses so close together – I am so sorry for that pain you have experienced. . .

      thank you for visiting here today. am wondering if you have ever read Jerry Sitser’s book “a Grace Disguised.” it was the book I read and it ministered to me.

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