Numbness may be the word that best describes the feeling when we get the news of a broken connection: the death of someone we love very much.
After the news, the first painful feeling: Why with him? Why not me? What a burden not to have been chosen!
And from then on the biggest challenge of my family was to live in spite of that pain. What should we do with death and life at the same time? Both there, together? How can one adjust to an environment in which that single and loved person no longer belongs? How to live with this void? How do you live without your companion? How do you learn to be an only child? Can anyone teach me?
For 17 years of my life I blindly believed that he would be my greatest companion, the companion for the rest of my life.
For many years my roommate, to sleep and get up together, to live together, to do everything together. To fight together and make peace together. Certainly the person you turn to when you need.
Will I be a good daughter from this tragedy on? Can I fill the space of this pain? Can I fill my parents’ pain? Why not me? Maybe because we do not choose to die. If it was an option, I would certainly have gone in his place.
Will my parents take this pain? Together? Separated?
New loss: separate parents. Does anyone teach how me to accept this new reality? Children want to see their parents together. At that moment, where all dimensions of mourning are present, children never want to see separate parents. Children want to hug parents, in sad moments, preferably in harmony. They never want parents in conflict.
I was sure about one thing only: someday life would show me why all this. I did not know where that certainty came from, but it had been inside me forever. From that day, God has gotten new companion, someone who looks after me like an angel and continues to comfort my heart in all my prayers, choices and meetings. Besides accessing my courage and pushing me forward, with all the love.
There is no worse or better death, just as in other grieving processes, losing brother also goes beyond physical pain and complete mental disorganization, they are the so called “secondary losses.”
Could I live with those longing for moments we had never lived? And nephews? How am I going to live without nephews, without a sister-in-law, or possibly a brother-in-law? It does not matter. What matters is that I miss everyday, I miss things I have never lived. I miss going to my brother’s house and opening the refrigerator as if it were the refrigerator in my house. I miss sitting at the kitchen table and exchanging ideas until 4 in the morning. Seeing nephews being born or supporting us unconditionally.
I got married: how could I not give my husband the opportunity to live with my brother? How could I not give my first child to him to Baptize? How can I not give my second child to be a Godfather? How can I explain to my 6-year-old daughter – who is curious about our family history, why uncle Edu is no longer with us?
It is symbolic, but it is touching anyways. It still touches me to see mom and dad trying to find different strategies to survive, until today.
I keep getting emotional everyday.
Time has always been my great allied. A few years have gone by and life tries to lead us in the best way, bringing new meanings to that pain. One of them, gratitude, is a very present feeling in my life and the gift of my greatest companion, my life companion.
Mariana Clark is a psychologist with 16 years of experience in the corporate world and in the last 7 years as a Human Resources Executive. A year ago she chose to change. She chose to make a living by taking care of lives, specializing and focusing on the female universe, supporting women to retell their own stories.
She lost her brother Eduardo at the age of 17, murdered tragically in a street fight. “He was 19 years old, and from there, my story has been retold through much gratitude.