As my Thursday, September 11th is quickly coming to an end, it's just beginning back home in Canada. And that means that it is my "little" brother's 22nd birthday. I was sure to wish him a happy birthday in China time, and I wished him a happy birthday in Canada time, too (gotta make sure I cover all the bases because believe me, he'd hold it over my head if I forgot it...he's kinda like that!) So, I'm writing this blog post today to wish my brother a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
My brother is a very chill guy. He has said on many occasions that he hates drama. Maybe that's why we clashed a little bit when we were younger, because I can be a dramatic person in that I experience my emotions on an extreme high or an extreme low. Let's just say I am an emotional person and my brother did not inherit those traits in our family genes. He is one of the most laid back, chill people I know.
Common phrases that come out of my brothers mouth that are heard on a semi-regular basis include (but are not limited to):
"Don't worry about it so much."
"Meh, I don't know."
"Masel." (May as well)
"I don't care."
Despite how furious, frustrated, and crazy it makes me feel when he rubs something off or shows no emotions of any kind, I love him nonetheless. However, after being away from home for a year in China and coming back to Canada, I experienced something with my brother that I'll remember perfectly for a long time to come.
When I saw him for the first time this summer, I was in a bit of a daze as I had passed out on my bed from an extreme case of jet lag whilst trying to will myself to stay awake for another hour or two while I waited for him to get home from the golf course (I had already been awake for 36 hours). When mom came in to my room to wake me up (as I had instructed her to) once Brad had gotten home, I slowly got out of bed, opened my eyes and made my way to the hallway just as Brad was rounding the corner from the kitchen. We both smiled at each other and I said "Hi there!" and we hugged. I didn't cry, but I did have a big lump in my throat. And we just hugged. It was the best hug I had ever shared with my brother. He didn't get awkward and let his arms hang down while I held on tightly. He didn't sigh or huff and puff while I laid my head against his chest. He just hugged me back. And it felt SO good. (Remember, my brother doesn't reveal emotion like this very often - so it was a pleasant and welcomed surprise). We spoke for a few minutes, caught up really briefly, then I headed back to bed as my body was caving in. I walked away and turned around and said to him: "Hey. It's good to see you." And he replied with "You too." It was perfect, simple, but at the same time was full of love and warmth. I remember it perfectly. I remember the tone of voice, the way things were said and what exactly was said. Because for me, it symbolized how much we have grown in our brother/sister relationship over the last 3 or 4 years. It's the relationship I've wanted for us for a long time. And on his birthday, I am filled with so much love, respect, and joy that I get to share this life with my brother, Brad.
Happy Birthday! I am so proud of you. For always doing what you want, how you want, and when you want. For fulfilling your hockey career as you did. For impacting lives the way you do. And for choosing and pursuing a career that is what YOU want to do, not what you feel you HAVE to do. You are an amazing man, friend, and brother. And I am so excited to see what the future holds for you, for our family, and for us. (And don't get made me at me and roll your eyes when you read this with all its gushing, sappy, heartfelt sentiments!)
Enjoy your day!