Sunday, April 20, 2008

The definition of PEACE!

Hi guys......I miss you all, really I do! But I, as of this very moment, have such a sense of peace in my soul. Today I did nothing of note. I slept in....my dad made me breakfast, I sat and talked with the woman who will be my new step mother, visited a friend, and I went to Walmart with my sister. I saw a beautiful rainbow after a torrential downpour and I saw 2 does....deer nibbling new grass at the roadside. Believe me when I tell you it could not have been a better day. Well maybe, if I could have had my 'brothers' with me. Baby steps..... I want to tell you a story about one of my brothers.....I have or rather, I had 2 brothers...siblings...two males who shared a parent(s) with me...Wayne who I lost almost 2o years ago and Bubba....the apple of my eye! the biggest and the best baby brother a gal could have.....however when I say 'brothers'..I also mean the poor saps who I have adopted...in total there have been or rather there are...4 of them. David and Vince who saved my sanity and my life respectively. I can't tell that story until I have sat them down and told them what I need to.....I've danced all around it with them both but I never feel as if I gotten them to understand.....hopefully I will get the chance, SOMEDAY....then there's Martin...we went to high school together. I adopted him because it gave me the chance to do for him for the great things that had been done for me....a giving back, if you will. Martin and I shared a great loss and it sealed us together as the heads and tails of a coin. And finally my Steve! This story I will tell....this story makes me laugh and makes me cry.....but it is some story, and it starts in SE Roanoke in 1975....I was in the fifth grade at Jamison Avenue Elementary school...I was a piece of work....introverted...yes ME! I walked around my neighborhood readng a book, never making eye contact...your basic shadow. The kids in the 'hood called me retarded and other things. There was a lil mom and pop store on the corner...W's Market. As I walked home from school most days I stopped in to grab a little Debbie cake, I think they were a quarter or something back then. The building is still there...right on the corner of 18th street and Jamison Avenue. I lived a block from Fallon Park. So Mr. W ran the store and he had a son, named Steve. Steve was a social outcast like me, he laughs when I say this....cause it's true. Kids can be such jerks. Steve was also ridiculed and taunted because of his weight. But when Steve and I would talk his eyes would make you feel so at ease, like a warn towel from the dryer. I wanted to protect from the little shits at school but he always said if a girl fought his battles it would be worse. So we endured. Sometimes Steve would walk with me home from school and then I would walk back to the store with him because he would have to work there. While he was working, I would walk and read. When Steve would come to my house, my mom would make such a fuss over him. She had lots of practice making a teased kid feel good...I was the object of everyone's torment and she always took me in her arms and made me feel better. So she could make Steve brighten up. I remember once when he came home with me and she was in the kitchen and she yelled for us to come to her. She told us to sit down and she gave us homemade cookies and milk.....Steve said, 'shouldn't', he was too fat already. Mom said.. 'what are you taling about? You're a growing boy and one day you're gonna be tall and lean, you need the strength to grow.' He smiled at her and wolfed down the cookies, then we were off to play. As things happen, Steve and I didn't have long to be playmates. His Dad got sick and had to sell the store and they moved. We did what we could but we grew apart. Until August 22th, 1987. That is the day my mom died. I'm not gonna go into great detail because as I sit here at home in Virginia the tears are way too close to the surface anyways. Just believe when I tell you....it was the day from hell....my only comfort was that my mother's pain was eased. But by the time I got there from Massachusetts she was gone. I walked into the house to a crowd of family waiting for me. My father called me to his side and turned to a tall handsome young man at his side and said, Brenda I think you know this gentleman. I looked at him, I stared at him. I didn't know a minster. Suddenly in his eyes I found the friend that I had lost so many years before. I felt that warmth wrap around me. I couldn't not believe it as my father told me how Steve had been ministering to my mom for about 6 months and how my mother, we spoke on the phone daily, had not mentioned this to me. It was a strange course of events. And truthfully now...it's a blur. Except for 2 things....my brother Wayne's departure from our mother funeral.....which I'll spare you all for now and second, what Steve said as he preached her funeral. I sat there and listen to him describe her as kind woman who share her joy with many. That even when he first met her that he knew she was a gentle soul because of the way she had raised me. That I had been a blessing in his life when he needed a friend. He suddenly began to relay the story of that day. The day of the cookies and how when she had first seen him after nearly a decade the first thing she said was...'See I told you....Tall and lean...you just needed a few cookies to give you the strength to grow.' He told how he sat at her bedside and laid his head on her arm and cried and she toused his hair. After the service I could only weep into his arms. Now...I bet about now you are trying to guess why I have gone on for so long about such a simple subject....well....if you remember I started telling you about my brothers...and how they each mean something to me...and how I HOPE I mean something to then.....well....Steve is dying....he has a degenerative disease from which there is no return. He does not complain, he feels he has completed his life's work...I do not, his wife does not, and his children certainly do not....but we have no say. I have spent all this time and all this energy to tell you one little thing.....Peace.....Pray for peace....Pray for my 'brother' Steve. He has found his peace...we are working on ours. God bless.....it's good to be home.
P.S I have tons of pics and movies...but I'm using dial up so....when I get the time.....smooches


KellySawtelle said...

Wow what a great story!! Sounds like you are enjoying some time at "home" Iwill keep your brother Steve in my thoughts and prayers!! xoxoxox I miss you smooches!


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