No one was more relieved than me to see the back of 2019.
I had a meal at a restaurant with my close, shattered family on New Year’s Eve, got home, tidied the house and went to bed, missing the fireworks, the ‘auld lang syne’ and best wishes for the year ahead. I slept though it all.
It was a truly dreadful year in so many ways and I can only hope that this year will bring some semblance of joy.
I miss my brother with an indescribable pain and I don’t think I will ever be able to put those feelings into words. This year would be his 50th birthday. Yet, and yet, we must take him with us and move forward.
It is not about forgetting him and his incredible legacy, it is about taking all that he learned and taking that, and him, with us. He was a remarkably charismatic and inspirational person, someone you felt connected to as soon as you met him, and he left no one out – he was a friend to everyone, something I could learn from. His vibrancy was utterly infectious.
How can we bring his legacy into what we want to achieve this year? It won’t be easy, but when I last saw him, we spoke about my PhD, the conferences I’d taken part in across Europe. I encouraged him to start the blog he’d always talked about.
After falling apart, I would like to think my brother would encourage us to fall together. Life is short. With that in mind, I have picked up my PhD. I have apologised to friends I’ve let slip. I’ve been hibernating, in absolute grief and pain.
My brother had searched the world for answers, found many, implemented most and carved out a good life, all the while looking after so many other people.
To describe his loss is almost impossible to put into words, but we have to.