February 4, 2009

A little reminder....

My aunt recently sent me this Christmas photo of me, my siblings and two cousins. That's me, the shortest one on the left in the front row, with the cute, red tights. Then my cousin Todd(who hated to have his photo taken), my brother Jeff (the cute little blond with the huge grin), my cousin Pam(with the bowl haircut), my brother Mark(with a toothless grin). In the back row is my sister Karen (white shirt with funky hair), my brother Mike(he's so handsome) and my sister Glenda (red dress with those classic glasses). It was a very happy time back then, when we were little and all of the families got together for Christmas and other holidays. I think back on those memories a lot.

It was 24 years ago today that my brother Jeff died a car accident along with his best friend. Three other boys survived, one being my husband Eric. It was a day that changed my family's lives forever. I am sad today. But I am also so thankful for the wonderful memories I have of my brother and for my wonderful family that I have today. I don't have any projects to show you today. Just a gentle reminder to step away from your computer and spend some time with your loved ones. Tell them you love them. Hug them a lot. Do it now. Do it often.

Mish

73 comments:

Robin Kirkpatrick said...

Wow, very powerful story and message. I'm so sorry for your loss - even though it was a long time ago, you never get over it, do you? I lost my older brother to cancer at almost the same time (1986) and I still think about him often and miss his sense of humor. Thanks for sharing and reminding us how important our loved ones are - life is so short.

i {heart} papers said...

Aww...I'm sorry for your loss. I know how painful it is, even years later. Thanks for the heartfelt reminder.

Aunt T said...

What a beautiful picture. Sending you a hug today. I lost my sister nine years ago and although the pain lessens over time it never goes away. I try to fill my thoughts with those wonderful childhood memories we shared. I hope you are able to do the same.

HUGS,

Teresa

IamDerby said...

Sending you a hug. Your brother was a cutie, love those old pictures. Thanks for the gentle reminder.

Tracye said...

Your blog is one of the top few that I view DAILY for inspiration. I've never left a comment here ... but after your message today... I just had to. Thank you for taking the time to express the importance of spending time with your family. I lost my brother 13 years ago and my step-fater 2 years ago, both to suicide. I am grateful to see that one of my favorite bloggers keeps family bonds close to heart. Thank you for all that you do (even when you don't know you're doing something inspirational for someone else)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that gentle reminder Mish. We can so easily forget with all this wonderful technology to withdraw us away. What a powerful message. I too am sorry for your loss as I lost my Mother 9 years which was much too soon for me. She was only 62. I miss her like crazy. Life really is too short and loved ones are really what it's all about! Be blessed and Thanks for being a blessing!!! I am addicted to your blog by the way...Smile :)

carole (TruCarMa) said...

Thanks for the reminder, Mish. What a wonderful photo, and I'm so, so sorry for the loss of your beloved brother. I'm going to be thinking about you and taking your advice as I go throughout my day. Big, big hugs to you. (((Mish)))

ivwhy said...

very true........i make sure my boys know that i love them & give hugs and kisses all the time!

sending you a big hug today!

Lorie said...

Your picture is completely adorable! I, too, have a couple of times each year that I feel like you. I have learned some mighty lessons from those time and, I think, have become a more loving person because of it. Thanks for sharing your story with us!

Sallie said...

Your photo and message really touched me! (I'm drying my tears now)Thank you for the reminder that we all need to take time to love and verbally express that love. You are in my thoughts. ((((Hugs)))))

Lori H said...

Big hugs to you, Mish. The 4th anniversary of my brother's passing is quickly approaching, so I know how you feel. Your photo reminds me so much of the ones of when I was growing up (maybe it's a midwestern thing).

Lisa G said...

So sorry for your loss Mish and for Eric's memories of that day. Blessing to you both.

Pat said...

Thinking of you today and keeping you and your family in my prayers. Loosing a loved one is something you never get over, but somehow learn to live with the pain. I hope the happy memories that you have of your brother will bring a smile to your heart today.

Diana said...

Oh Mish, thank you for sharing the feelings of your heart this morning...I don't know why, but the death of a loved one creates such a deep pain from the sorrow of the life that was lost and, at the same time, an incredible feeling og gratitude for those who are still living around us; it is SO intense. I'll be thinking of you today...

Karen said...

The picture is a wonderful memory for you. I am so sorry for your loss and so glad that you are able to talk about it. No one ever forgets those that touch our lives no matter how briefly. Wishing you sweet memories.

Kate Lewis said...

Thank you for sharing this with us Mish - thinking of you today. I lost my sister 6 years ago and the anniversary is still hard. Cherish the happy times. Thanks for your continued inspiration hugs Kate xx

Anonymous said...

Hugs to you today. Tomorrow is promised to no one and sometimes we need a gentle reminder to show our loved ones how much they mean to us. Thanks and God bless.

jana said...

I am so sorry to hear about your loss all of those years ago. It is a good day to be reminded of what is important as you said. Take care

Michelle said...

What a beautiful message.. Heartfelt wishes as you remember you dear brother..We may not always understand the path God has planned for us.. but we can rest assured that he know the way and will be there to guide us through the hard parts..

Laurie said...

Mish-thanks for the gentle reminder of how precious our relationships that we take for granted really are. Cherish every minute - we aren't guaranteed a tomorrow. My late husband died 12 years ago this last month so I've had a lot of these reflections as of late also. A very big hug to you today.

MichelleY said...

Ah Mish! My heart and prayers are with you and your family today! I look at Jeff's smile and its no wonder why he has a special place in your heart. Love Ya, Sweetie!!

BTW....you were such a cutie patootie! (and you still are)

{pam} said...

{{{{{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}}}} my thoughts are with you in this time of sadness. how lucky you are, though, that you have so many fond memories of your brother.

BTW . . . cracked me up reading your list of names in the pic . . . my name is pam and my ex's name was todd, and another ex named mike, and dated a jeff . . . LOL!!!

Chelle said...

no project today, and yet, i am just as inspired by you mish! thank you for the heartfelt message, i am sure it was very hard to write.

i will take your advice, and i will be thinking of you today...and doing a little praying to...

what a blessing you are in my life in this land of blog!
chelle

Jenstampz said...

Thank you for sharing a special piece of your life with all of your readers. It is wonderful memories like these that get us through sad times. I am going to spend some time with my kiddies today. Thanks for the reminder. Have a nice day!

DeeDee said...

Oh dear Mish, I had to grab a tissue!! I'm so sorry for your loss and so thankful you have wonderful memories too!! Have a lovely day the best you can girlie!! HUGS & Smoochies!!!

Vina said...

Such a beautiful family photo. I'm very sorry for your loss. I hope your photos & happy memories surround you in love. Thank you for your touching reminder to appreciate our loved ones each day. It's sometimes too easy to forget how fragile life really is.
{hugs},
Vina

Shay said...

Thank you for sharing that wonderful picture and your wisdom gained from the loss of your brother. I know nothing can fill such an aching loss, but you honor your brother with your strength and incredible ability to love. And like so many have said before me, you bless us all with your generosity, numerous kindnesses and creativity. I wish you all the best!

Christina C said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It's a good thing you can still hold onto the good memories because he'll never be forgotten. I will not take anyone for granted. Thanks for the story.

resmith said...

This is so powerful. To think back on the ones that were dear to you and remember them. I lost a sister to cancer in December of 1981. I still think of her often and what she meant to me and still does.
My heart goes out to you and your family. This is a great picture and will always be treasured.

Michelle said...

Oh Michelle...I'm thinking about you today, hun. Sooo sad....I have a little brother (little - he's 33 - LOL) and we don't talk often...I'm going to call him today. So sad for you....and your parents....such a void in your heart and your family. Life is so precious - and it's very evident the way you are with your girls how much you know and appreciate it and your loved ones. Big Hugs to you today.

Edie said...

I'm so sorry for your loss.
It's very moving...

I lost my one and only sibling almost 6 years ago and it never gets any easier.

((hugs)) to you on your day of rememberance.

Liane said...

what a lovely post/tribute to your brother. I can't imagine how tough this must be for all of you. Hugs

Geny (Mommy Geny) said...

Thinking of you today Mish and sending you hugs. Hope you get to spend time with loved ones today. Thanks for the heartwarming story and gentle reminder of what is truly important in this life!

Susan said...

OMG, my heart goes out to you and your family. Know that he is watching over you and will forever be in your heart. Cherish the moments, I cannot even imagine such a loss. I wish you all the best. You are an incredible person. Your love and generosity is very evident in your blog. I am sure you got some of that from you beloved brother. He was a cutie. Looks like he really had a lust for life. Thank you always for your inspiration and for reminding us all that life really is too short!!! I will take time today to stop and cherish what is very near and dear to me.

loriaj61 said...

I am sorry for your loss, but am grateful for you words of encouragement. What a sweet reminder to us all to love our families and not to take them for grantit (sp?). May you heart never be lonely and your life alway be full of joy . . .

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry about your brother, but glad for you that you have such fond memories of times spent together. I will definitely keep your message with me today...
Melissa

Melanie said...

michelle, thank you for the reminder about what is important. I'm sorry about the loss in your life and your family's. Thank you for sharing this with us. (((hugs)))

Marci said...

Thank you for the heartfelt and much needed reminder of not getting too caught up in life to make time for what is TRULY important. May you find comfort in knowing that so many people are keeping you and your family in their thoughts and prayers today. Tomorrow will be a brighter day.

retiredheather said...

What a lovely momento to your brother...such a sentiment of love.
Hugs
Heather

Donna said...

{{hugs}} thank you for sharing your heart. what a fun picture!

Dottie K. said...

So sorry for your loss. Thanks for sharing your story and reminding everyone how precious life is. Hugs to you!

QC said...

{{{{MISHY}}}}}

Love you girlfriend.....

Mary Jo said...

My heart goes out to you.....

young said...

So sorry about your brother - glad it's only a bittersweet memory now. Blessings to you today.

Tami McBeain (tmarie) said...

Thank you for the beautiful reminder to cherish our families everyday. I lost my brother when I was only 4 but I know that someday we'll be together again! Blessings to you...you inspire me everyday!

Gingerbread Gal said...

So sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your story. It really touched me, as I only have one sibling (my older brother) whom I love tremendously. I am going to call him right now.
xxxx Rachel

Claire Brennan said...

I was in bits by the end of your post. I'm so sorry for your loss. God Bless, Claire.

Brooke said...

I can't even begin to imagine your pain even after all this time. One thing I'm grateful for is that I really do treasure my family. I'm very careful not to forget how special they are. Hope your memories help you smile a little today.

Kendra said...

You know I love ya babe! Big hugs!
K.

Lisa Westphal said...

~These days are always so rough. I hope that your day is filled with lots of gentle reminders of your brother's love, and that your family finds comfort in one another.
~My son Chase died three years ago. He was only 17 months. His siblings were 4 & 8 at the time.
~In reading your story I realized that you are in their shoes. . .24 years from now my boys will be saying, 'my brother Chase died 24 years ago today'. I can only hope that they too are able to recall fond memories of him and take time to remember just how precious life truly is.
~Thank you for reminding us to 'cherish' (my 'word' for the year) one another. . .and more importantly for sharing your story.

Tracey McNeely said...

I am so sorry for your loss Michelle and what a moving story. I lost my brother a year and ahlf ago to Cancer. He left a beautiful family behind, he was such a wonderful person and I miss him everyday. I can only empathize with you how sad you must feel today. Sending hugs your way.

Lori said...

oh i so agree. we get so caught up in the day to day and forget to do just that, be thankful for "our" people we have in our lives.
Thank you for this reminder.
Lori

Connie M. said...

Great post...thanks for the important reminder.

Connie

Beth said...

{hugs} MP! I am so sorry for your loss babe! I had no idea Eric was in the car too! I bet your brother loves watchin' down on you and the reds!

Becky P. said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I am thankful you shared that story with us. It's always important to tell our loved ones how much they mean to us.

Tracey said...

Michelle - I am so sorry for your loss. Life is too short, and you really just NEVER know. I lost a friend of mine in an accident in 1995, she was 12. It totally changed my life. It's good to remind eachother that what you have today will not last forever. Enjoy it while it's here...even if it's my little ones whining about not wanting to go to bed... {{{HUGS}}} Thanks for sharing such an important moment in your life.

Laurie in MN said...

I am so sorry for you, Mish, and your family. Thank you for sharing your childhood picture and the special meaning it has for you. I think it is important to talk about the people we miss, and know they will not be forgotten.

Aviator girl said...

So sorry for your tragic loss. Thank you for reminding us how precious life is and to love those dear to us every day!

Kathyc on SCS said...

Awww Mish, I am sorry...24 years; what a beatuiful family photo to help keep memories even closer.
Kathy Camasso

Anonymous said...

What a cute picture. I am so sorry for your loss. Huge hugs being sent.
Susannk

Clara said...

I'm so, so sorry for your loss.

DHBakker said...

So true-spending time with family is the most precious thing you miss when they are gone. I don't know all the details of your brothers accident but I do know how you are feeling. My sister, 15months older than me, was killed in a car accident almost nine years ago-of the five people involved only one walked away. Life goes on and you learn to cope so in a sense things get easier but the pain is still there. My thoughts are with you.

Mindy said...

Thanks for the reminder!

reeree62 said...

What a wonderful family photo. That goodness for all the years you did get to have with your beloved brother. I am so, so sorry for your loss. Thanks so much for the reminder we all need once in a while.

emmysue said...

I'm so sorry, My sister in law was killed it will be 4 years on the 9th (my son's birthday) he was 3 when she passed. It sure does change a family but I have so many pictures of her. Please take Care!
kathy

lakind said...

I'm so sorry! I lost my 46 year-ole brother to cancer 11 years ago (my only sibling), so I know what that does to a family. I still miss him terribly! My thoughts are with you!

Joan B said...

Oh Michelle, what a heart breaking story. Thanks for sharing on such a very sad day.

maryps said...

Mish, you have my deepest sympathy. No matter how much time passes after the death of a loved one, the scar on our heart runs deep and is easily reopened. I have lost too many, but the one that never heals is the loss of my mother to cancer in 1983. At only 55, she was my BEST friend. I continue to miss her love, warmth, and guidance every single day. There seems to be no limits or expiration dates on sorrow.

Chris said...

Special days seem to pull out memories although painful to recall. Thanks for the reminder not to forget to tell people how important they are to us and not to take anyone for granted.
Every day is an important day.

Charmaine said...

Thanks for sharing your story with us. We do need to be reminded often to take a step back from our hectic lives and love the ones in our lives...thanks for the reminder :)

Hugs,
Charmaine

stampylisa said...

Mish, I'm sorry for your loss, thank you for sharing your raw feelings with us on your post. I too lost a brother, 15 yrs ago to suicide. I miss him greatly every single day. I have another half brother, but not a bunch of other sibs to journey thru life together. So I too cherish the memories that I have of growing up in the 70s/80s with my lil brother.

Becky said...

How devastating. I am sure it doesn't get any easier every year either. Sending all of my love you way Mish. What a sweet looking boy.

ninasays said...

Aw, this made me all teary. You are so right. Need to hug my dog now. And give a big hug to my mom and my brother when I see them again.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts!! Hugs from Germany - Nina

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