Column: DOTTING MY TEAS – This Healing Time

Last month marked the passing of a cherished soul in my life, my brother Stevie. It’s been a poignant reminder of the sorrow that accompanies parting with someone deeply loved. The process is emotionally taxing, leaving us to ponder over the seemingly endless tears that we shed—a testament to the depth of our connections.

Stevie had a simple yet profound way of appreciating life’s pleasures. He would often endorse his favorite treats, like ice cream or a hearty breakfast of pancakes and sausage, with a hearty, “It’s good for you.” His choices, always filled with joy, encouraged us to embrace the little delights in life, finding health and happiness in them.

In the wake of his absence, I’ve been navigating through the motions, seeking solace in the understanding that our time on this earth is finite and meaningful. We all have our paths, leading us eventually to our final destination, home.

The supportive messages from friends during this challenging time have been a beacon of light. One text particularly stuck with me, its words echoing the sentiment many of us feel in such moments: “He lived a life of happiness, touching everyone he met with his kindness and joy. He was a teacher by simply being, a soul deserving of peace.”

Another friend admitted, “There are no words,” capturing the ineffable nature of grief. Indeed, there are moments when words fail to encapsulate the depth of our feelings, the silence between us speaking volumes.

Grieving brings with it a foggy state of mind, where making decisions becomes a Herculean task, and forgetfulness a frequent visitor. It’s a journey through a landscape forever altered.

I often find myself contemplating writing thank you notes to my friends, crafting heartfelt acknowledgments in my mind that have yet to make their way onto paper.

Attempting to rationalize grief seems almost instinctual; we search for logic in the illogical, hoping to find a roadmap through our sorrow. Yet, it eludes us, and we come to accept that perhaps what we truly need is simply time to heal.

Stevie had a natural remedy for sadness—suggesting a treat or a meal together, reminders of the joys in life, insisting on the importance of communal moments over food. His generosity extended to always finding joy in paying it forward, even if it was just covering a meal.

In reminiscences and shared memories, Stevie’s spirit continues to teach us. Like the gentle glow from a candle, he showed us how to navigate through life’s darker moments with warmth and light.

Just as I was reflecting on these thoughts, a friend reached out, offering a day of companionship and respite. It was a reminder of the power of connection, of the support networks that sustain us through loss.

The lessons Stevie imparted, consciously or not, keep surfacing. To savor the simple, joy-filled moments, to appreciate the act of caring, and to recognize that in every gesture of kindness, there is a profound impact. He taught that life, in all its facets, is to be embraced and celebrated, emphasizing the importance of human connections and the small acts that bind us.

Having someone like Stevie in our lives, whose light shone so brightly, leaves an indelible mark. His love for life and the gentle way he navigated his journey serve as a beacon for us all, especially when faced with bumpy roads. It is in these moments that we realize—through the tears and laughter, through the shared stories and silent companionship—that indeed, candles, metaphorically speaking, are good for us.

As we all navigate through our healing journeys, let us remember the capacity for light in moments of darkness, and the enduring strength of love and friendship. Stevie’s legacy is a testament to the profound impact of living a life anchored in happiness and kindness—a life that continues to inspire even in absence.

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