My dad and I had a tumultuous relationship during my adult life mostly due to his alcoholism. We were able to reconnect back in October, and even though that meeting didn’t “fix” our relationship, we were able to respectfully talk to each other about the pain and suffering that my brother and I had dealt with these past 8 years.
If you or someone you love is dealing with addiction, please seek out help. Unfortunately there is a point of no return, but there is hope and there are people who love you despite what you’re going through.
As I’ve been telling people, I’m a cocktail of emotions right now —- and that’s okay. It’ll settle eventually. Right now I’m thankful that my dad is finally at ease and no longer has to hide within pain and suffering. This life is difficult so make sure to surround yourself with people who love and support you and always love and support them back.
The last several years I really wanted to help my brother, but I could do nothing except piss him off and be the target of his frustration and his discontent with life. He was not kind to me and I was afraid of him. I tried my best to endure this with patience and understanding, trying hard to keep in mind that when we were kids he endured being the target of my frustration and discontent.
Finally, as he prepared to slip away from this life, we were given two hours to be alone together. I read John O’Donohue to him, I sang “Love Prepare Me” and “Light is Returning,” I talked to him and told him I was sure the next thing to happen would be finding himself floating in peace, cradled in compassion.
When he slipped away, very gently and peacefully, for a second it was like everything all around us was illuminated in a flash of love, forgiving and tender. The feeling of that moment has become the most important thing I remember about my brother.