Isaiah 6:8

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Death Through the Eyes of a Child.

I was eight years old when my brother died. He was five almost six. It is this time of year that seems to bring out memories of that period in my life....you see he died January 5th.....10 days after Christmas......sixteen days before his sixth birthday. I learned at a very early age how death affects people....I am a victim of it. I actually suffer PTSS (Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome) because of it....even today....at 54. Why?....well I believed it was my fault that he died....you see....I got a bike for Christmas.....and had spent many hours burning up the roads in our neighborhood since Christmas Day.....but on that fateful Jan 5th....Dougie and I were playing in the backyard....he was swinging on a rope swing in the ficus tree....and I was attaching playing cards to the spokes of my bike...."Push me....please.....push me" he kept saying....and I would stop, push him again, and go back to the cards......when I finished I got on my bike to go ride with my BFF Carol. She had gotten a bike too....and lived two doors down.....pleading from the backyard....Dougie cried again...."Push me....Push me.....I hate you......I'm gonna tell." From my mouth came words I have wished a million times over I could take back....."Drop dead!"......Carol and I rode for a while....and then slipped back to my house through the backyard cut through.....just as we broke through the bushes....I saw Dougie....playing strange on the rope swing....and Chipper talking to my mom at our backdoor....and my mom's face contorting as she and my dad came running outside....somebody called the fire dept....they were there in moments....so was an ambulance....but it was too late.....my brother had accidentally hung himself on the rope swing....I was scared....and so was Carol....so we ran back to her house.....my parents went somewhere....I did not know where....but when they came back....they did not have Dougie with them...and they were both very sad. Friends of my parents brought us food....and took me away to spend the night.....I did not understand it then....I thought I was being sent away....because of what I did.....the first viewing was in Florida.....and we were hidden behind a screen....I could hear people crying loudly on the other side...it was frightening.....the second viewing and the funeral itself was in Alabama.....more people crying....more people taking me away.....my brother....was asleep in a box....and he was cold. I did not sleep for two days....I just knew that they would all find out....it was my fault.....and they would send me away for good.....so I stayed silent. We returned home....a wounded family. My mom sat at the table all day.....and smoked and played solitaire. I returned to school and my dad to work...and the world went on.....I tried to become my fathers son. I fished with him....I did everything a son would do.....and tried to be the best at it. One day when we were fishing off the BeeLine....I began to cry....and told my dad it was my fault.....if I had just stayed in the yard....Dougie would be fishing with him right then....my dad held me....and cried with me....and said...if that were the case....it was his fault....he tied the knot. The relief that flooded me when I realized it was not my fault....was indescribable. I was innocent....I didn't do it. I grew up....became a Christian....and learned....about God.....growing a tree for His own son to die on.....wow.....I learned that death does not conquer us....because we are victorious through the blood of Christ.....yes, I still get a little mellow at this time of the year.....but I survive....you see...my Savior lives....and he calls me to come....and He gives me rest. So tonight I say...."O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" (1 Cor.15:55)....Not here! Bless you tonight. K

2 comments:

Leigh said...

I came to thank you....for subscriing as a follower...but I am in awe of this post. I cannot imagine how you must have felt. My heart breaks for your childhood and carring that burden. And I ache for your parents, no parent should outlive their child.
As a teen I lost five very close friends in a three year period. It affects me to this day in everything I do. The way I love, my friendships today, the way I chose to LIVE-truly LIVE. Even the way I parent. Still, not a day goes by that I do not think of them. Cry for them,and too- Celebrate them. And now, as an adult,I know that you know that you weren't responsible. No one knows when their time will come to an end and they will be called home for a greater purpose. KNow, that your brother lives on through you and the way you celebrate his life. The spirit never dies.


BIG HUGS to you. I wish I could hug you myself but know, in these cold and dark months that spring...and rebirth is ahead. It is the beautiful celebration of life. A circle. My prayers are with you.

Tracy said...

What a touching post!
Brought tears to my eyes reading this ...