Sunday, March 28, 2010
It feels odd to be away from my brother as he made his first steps. I received a text from my mom and later talked to my brother about his accomplishment. Using the walker, he walked around his neighborhood, stopped to eat lunch, and sat down on a regular chair. He said it felt amazing. He described riding again as not so far out of reach, that he can now picture himself on a bike and it does not feel like a far away fantasy. I am amazed by my brother's strength and perseverance to say the least. He is an example of how much our minds play a role in our achievements and the relentless pursuit of our dreams. My brother considers himself to be an average guy. He in no way intends to stand out or take up too much space or use too many resources. He's a minimalist, happiest amongst friends and nature, has little connection to money and material wealth. He treats others as he would like to be treated, always. And he never asked, "Why me?" The closest he came to that question was, "Why now?" Three months ago, I didn't know if my brother was going to live. Three months ago, I was worried he would not want to live, given the severity and irreparable nature of his injuries. Now, in March, I stand in awe of his progress. I am forever grateful for my brother's life and I am newly encouraged by the quality of life he will likely experience. Our lives and experiences, whether painful or pleasurable do not exist in the context of the individual. We learn from each other. We are touched by our neighbor's experience. We are invited to see the interconnectedness amongst all humans. We understand what our brother's suffering might be like the moment we open our hearts. For this, we are blessed. For this, we have purpose. For this, we are one.