Monday, February 28, 2022

So Many Ripples…

“And think of him as living
in the hearts of those he touched…
for nothing loved is ever lost
and he was loved so much.”

~ Ellen Brenneman

My little brother was born a month before my 9th birthday; and since his arrival robbed me of all my “baby” privileges—the ripest mango, the first piece of coconut candy, my grandmamá’s lap—I was not the most gracious of big sisters. In fact, I was determined to make the little beast know who was boss. The second my mother got home from the hospital, everyone ran up to her to fuss over the usurper. There was a storm of “He’s so cute” and “Can I hold him?” and “You must be so proud”.

I just stood in a corner, in silence, glaring at the whole world.

After the room quieted some, my grandmamá said, “Come meet to your little brother.”

“No,” I told her, my glare growing darker.

She ignored my hostility, picked him up out of my mother’s arms, and walked towards me. “Look,” she said, holding his face very close to my face, “he is smiling at you.”

I had closed my eyes, refusing to look at him. Besides, newborns did not smile. And if they did, it was only gas—my mother always said that. My grandmamá didn’t move, so I shut my eyes tighter. Then I felt little fingers touch my chin. I opened my eyes, ready to tell the little monster to stop it, ready to shout that there was no space for him, ready to bare my teeth... But I found my little brother’s face, just inches from mine, the cutest of toothless grins aimed right at me. And without wanting it, I was grinning right back.

That was the first time my little brother smiled me into loving him. He just had a way about him, that brother of mine… a way to show his whole heart in a smile that made anyone seeing it want to join in the fun.

He was a bit reckless. He was more than a bit of a scoundrel. He loved (a lot) and smiled easily. And I thank the universe every day for that gift.


Gregory Guerrero

(Mar 10, 1986 – Feb 28, 2013)

“No
one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away.” ~ Terry Pratchett

- linked to Poets and Storytellers United--Friday Writings #16: An Exploration of Peace.

37 comments:

  1. Funny, sweet, poignant, touching ... I will never run out of adjectives to describe how this impacted me. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am glad you feel the words, the thoughts, the love...

      Delete
  2. Hail to the mischief makers that made a home in our hearts and made life more fun. And hugs to you, Magaly.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Such a touching tribute and some lovely poetry.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lovely tribute.. I loved it when I read it on Insta first.. and again as I read it now. And that Terry Pratchett quote as well...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautifully told. I'm the older brother, remember my mother bringing my sister home.
    I thought you might enjoy this:
    http://fiftywordstories.com/2018/11/06/ron-lavalette-14-year-old-pediatrician/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You were probably more graceful than I was, lol!

      I shall take a look-see.

      Delete
  6. May God grant him peace.

    You told this tale as only you could.

    My Condolences Magaly

    Much love

    ReplyDelete
  7. My brother who came after only a year later, so the meeting was quite different and one I don't remember. I never stop feeling and living his death though. I've lost three siblings and am always trying to grok it. The picture here says a lot. I love it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think we can ever makes sense of losing a sibling, especially when they are younger. Maybe one day...

      Delete
  8. Beautifully expressed. You're the ripple that lovingly keeps your brother alive.

    ReplyDelete
  9. This is a funny, fun, loving tribute to your brother. I agree, the ripples of life never stop. Your brother, a very handsome man.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not as long as we keep them going. And we always will, won't we?

      Delete
  10. Beautiful tribute to your brother and what a lovely photo !

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is a funny, and poignant tribute to your brother. And love that Terry Pratchett quote.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. It's one of my favorite Pratchett quotes.

      Delete
  12. I too am a sister to a little brother – only four years younger – so I understand your first paragraph perfectly! But mine turned out to be very adorable too, and I'm glad to say we are still good mates even though he as been based in New Zealand for many years. There are some things we've been through, about which each of us is the only other person in the world to fully understand.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think your last bit describes one of the reasons I miss him most. We, too, lived through things that were only ours. It's hard when that person can no longer answer back.

      Delete
  13. I absolutely felt this. Just gorgeous words. It's hard not to love someone that can make us smile even when we don't want to.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's ridiculously hard. Especially when they know it. I think that they just can't help taking advantage. And since they love us, that's a good thing. Smiles are a good thing.

      Delete
  14. This breaks my heart. I'm so sorry. You wrote this lovingly and so sweetly.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Such a beautiful tribute to your brother.
    Sending lots of good wishes to you.

    All the best Jan

    ReplyDelete
  16. Such a deeply beautiful tribute...I love this so much...and that photo is just so powerful ...you are both such beautiful souls! hugs and much love

    ReplyDelete

I love your insightful remarks. So, go ahead, let them fly…

friends and such...