Thursday, April 19, 2007

In Loving Memory of Wellington P Bonaparte

My Brother
Born April 19, 1984

My birthday is always full of fun and frivolity, songs and good food. But there are also quiet moments... moments when Mom prays over me, with her hand caressing my neck... and moments when she tells me stories... about my birth and adoption, and about my brother, Wellington.

Wellington left our world in the summer of 2001. He was over 17 years old. I was just over 2 years old. In that two years we shared together, I remember many things:

  1. He knew everything. He knew how to be.
  2. He could hold it forever (unfathomable to me at the time).
  3. And when it was time, he knew where to pee... and poop. (Ok, I admit it... I was confused for a while).
  4. He knew how... and when... to sleep. (Again... me... confused).
  5. He knew how to fetch. He knew if Mom threw it, she meant for it to be brought back to her. (I still don't get that... if she throws it, doesn't that mean she doesn't want it???). And he knew what "I can't reach it" meant. (Again with the confusion).
  6. He was our protector. He was suspicious and intuitive... me, not so much so.
  7. He comforted Mom in a way I didn't know how... but I've learned.
  8. He was the best early morning eye licker in the world... paws down.
  9. He savored his food and preferred Mom's company to the isolation of our food bowls... making him an easy mark for swiping food.
  10. He knew that paper is not a food group... though I'm still not convinced.

And here's what I've learned from the stories:

  1. When we tracked in dirt and mud, and Mom asked, "Were you born in a barn???"... he could, legitimately answer... 'why, yes... yes, I was' ".
  2. He had broad horizons and lived lots of places, adapting well to every one of them: Melrose (farm) to Austin (townhouse) to Nacogdoches (house to house) to College Station (house) to Bryan (house) to Houston (apartment to house to house to townhouse).
  3. Grandpa gave him his middle initial, 'P'... for what Mom calls all the obvious reasons.
  4. He had the good fortune to know his Grandma and Grandpa and all of their love. I wasn't born in time to know them... but Mom is sure they love me, too.
  5. He was there for Mom through all of her losses.
  6. I was there for her when she lost Wellington. I learned how... from him.

No comments: