The Year That Was


Photo by Camille Siegel

A year has nearly passed since my brother and father-in-law passed away.  They say that it takes a year to come to terms with loss—if you ever really do—you only adapt.

The year 2017 was full of great joy, I found the love of my life, we married and I moved to Paris. All along with this great joy which took me years to find, my brother and my father-in-law were dying. My brother was diagnosed with Kidney cancer and my father-in-law was battling dementia.  Sadly, my brother’s battle was short-lived.  Philip lost his battle within six months of his cancer returning, there was hardly time to say good-bye except via telephone as he didn’t want to see anyone. Even his close friends barely knew, but I knew he was gone when I went into Saint Sulpice in Paris and I looked up, it was like a sign that let me know he was above.

In life, great joy always comes with loss to overshadow the moment.  Almost as if it counterbalances the joy and pain.  What does one learn from such an experience?  I can say that I learned to live in the moment and never take any day for granted.  Live your life to the fullest as you never know when your moment will be lost forever.

The year that was…beautiful joy and tremendous pain.  Equal pillars in a year like no other.  As I approach the year anniversary of my brother’s passing, I reflect on the happy times when we were young, the funny things said and the hilarious moments that I cherish.

Take stock in your life and never forget that with great joy comes pain. Soak up the happiness you find and hold on to it and remember the beauty that is called life.


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