Pin It It has been six months since the tornadoes in Joplin, Missouri. That means it's been six months since my brother died. It seems like yesterday and also like such a long time.
I hadn't seen Troy since the summer of 2006, when my grandmother died.
His health had been bad for the past eight-ish years, something like that.
In 2009, his health took a serious turn for the worse, and we expected that he would not survive. At that time, I had a ton of stuff going on at home. I was a single mother for all intents and purposes because Jim was in Afghanistan. I couldn't just take off and go. Then Troy got better, against the odds. He kind of did that several times.
Then the urgency of going to visit went away. He got better and the "last time" and the "say goodbye" didn't seem as pressing. We talked on the phone a few times, and I have an email from him which still makes me giggle. He knew Jim was gone and told me to let him know if I needed anything. :)
When Jim got back, life kind of took over again and we just didn't make plans to visit. I desperately wish now that we would have.
This last week, I have been remembering silly things. Games we used to play - our house in Nashville had a hall that was completely dark if we closed the doors. We did this silly charades in the dark type game. I remember the BRIGHT red carpet in his bedroom in that house. Last week I got a couple of boxes of old stuff out of my old bedroom at my parents' house and remembered him out there listening to Bill Cosby and Howie Mandel records. I remember him watching Spies Like Us over and over and laughing hysterically through the whole thing. And OH MY HEAVENS, his son Tommy? So many mannerisms of Troy. Things he says and does ... it's a little freaky. And very cool. I would have never remembered Troy singing and dancing (a little strangely) to some old Michael Jackson song until I saw Tommy do it just last weekend. And this is a blessing. :)
And now it's Thanksgiving. Really, I'm not feeling all that thankful. I have regrets for not doing things because the cost to me was perceived to be too high. And then ... to survive all that he did and be killed by a tornado? That doesn't make sense to me. So, I am partly a little angry.
Then again, I am SO thankful. We had a perfect childhood. I have great memories. I see my childhood family somewhat mirrored in my own. I have faith that one day this WILL make sense.
So as I sit here in a dark house in the rain, far from home and far from my parents, I'm trying to let the thankful things outweigh the "want to pitch a fit and say this is unfair" things.
And right now? I think that's good enough.