Tuesday 24 April 2012

For Tristan.

Things like this aren't supposed to happen. But then, life is kind of like that, isn't it?

Let me start this post by saying - my older brother is the most intelligent and insightful person that I've ever had the privilege to know. Seriously. And he's put up with a lot from me - bed short-sheeting, early morning wake-up calls, IT emergencies, learning to dance ;) And he's always put up with it with incredibly good grace. And patience. Even though my brain was never wired to understand Maths or Science or computers, he's calmly talked me through it all.

My brothers and I share an incredibly close bond. We're the only ones who will ever know what is was like to be children to our amazing parents. The only ones who will remember picnic suppers in my Dad's old car where we used to drive around Bulawayo for the sole purpose of having a driving picnic. Chasing lizards at Matopos. Very odd play-play lunches involving salt water and blue-dyed carrots. Losing our parents at a young age also made us only closer.

Tristan is gentle. He is generous. He is kind to a fault. He has a conviction of his beliefs that is a wonder to behold. He is sure of his faith. He can argue like no-one else. His general knowledge is amazingly diverse. His view of the world has been an eye-opener to bear witness to.

And then this happened (follow the link to read his story). Why? God only knows... And when I say that God only knows, I mean that. Because how - HOW could this have happened? And WHY? For the longest time I was angry. So very very very angry. Mostly out of fear, but also at the injustice of it all. Multiple Sclerosis is NOT supposed to be hereditary. We watched this awful disease take everything from our precious Mother, and my heart stuck in my throat remembering what that was like.

BUT God gave us the faith and the strength to make it through that - to make something beautiful and meaningful of our lives, and here I have to just trust Him again.

For these past 2 and a half years, I allowed myself to hope a little that somehow the doctors were wrong, but just recently, we've received confirmation. Tristan has MS,

For those of you who don't know what MS is, you can read this article. But a long story short, it's a progressive degenerative neurological disorder.

Treatment has come a long way since 1988 when our Mom was diagnosed with MS, and there is a lot that can be done to delay the progression. But still, MS for me will always be a quiet, creeping, dark beast that manifested in our Mom losing a little more of herself each day. I cannot behold it as anything less - and that fear holds my heart even when the facts say otherwise.

Tristan also happens to be the most philosophical person that I know. He comforted me when I was so full of anger back in 2009, he reassured me and showed me his view of it all. I won't presume to share his viewpoints here, I'm sure he will do that at some stage and I will pass that on when he does. But he is brave, incredibly brave, and has always viewed life, I think, as the brief, short gift that it is.

It's so difficult to understand the purpose behind all of this now. To trust that there is a reason. For now, at the moment it reminds me just how PRECIOUS life is. How fragile it can be. How important it is to live your life out loud. Each day, without fail, because you just never know.

If nothing else, I hope this post reminds you, and encourages you, to go hug the people you love. Tell them you love them. Don't let the good things you have to say go unsaid. It would be amazing if the world could be a better place than it is, with more reason and justice. But until it is, I hope to create a little of heaven here on earth by living life with meaning and appreciation.

For Tristan, with more love & admiration than words can express.

1 comment:

  1. oh tiffs... I am so, so sorry...
    thank you for being so brave to share this. tristan, an amazing human being you are.
    X x x x x x