“You know, Dorothy, people think if you live to be my age, you should be grateful just to be alive. Well, that’s not how it works. You need a reason to get up in the morning. And sometimes even after you find one, life can turn right around and spit in your face.”
Seems like I’m always mad at my brother Phil.
I was mad the day my parents brought him back from the hospital.
I thought he’d take their love away from me, and instead, their love expanded and we felt more like a family.
I was mad at him when I was ten and he was four and we moved to a new neighborhood.
I was mad because he always made new friends more easily than I did.
And I’m mad today, because I never wanted to give the eulogy at my kid brother’s funeral.
I’m mad because he died.
He didn’t have the wisdom to know that family members shouldn’t allow themselves to grow apart.
Because when this day comes, they can no longer tell each other how they care.
If he’d had that wisdom, he could have shared it with me and I would have known the hundreds of memories I have of just the two of us - eating ice cream on the stoop of our building, or going through the drawers at Grandma’s house, or dressing up like the Brontë sisters.
How those memories fill me with joy.
Why didn’t you have that wisdom, Phil? Why didn’t you give us a chance to tell you how much we loved you?