I’ve used these pages over the past six months to complain about a lot. I have used them to vent my frustrations and deal with my grief. And as I look back I realize, “What the hell am I complaining about?” Granted, my father’s passing was difficult to deal with, and you’re never really ready for the passing of a family member, no matter how much you think you can prepare for it.
My separation was of my own doing, and even though it created some very low lows, there were really no surprises. Well, maybe a couple back in November……
But I look at my life and know that I am blessed. That my life, by comparison to 99% of everyone else, has been cake. And I don’t even have to go to those devastated in Asia by last year’s tsunami (and today’s repeat earthquake). I don’t have to go to Minnesota and the thought of parents mourning the children they had inexplicably pulled from their life. Compared to those events, I have nothing about which to complain.
I don’t have to go that far to be reminded of how lucky I am. Actually, all I have to do is look at my brother and think to myself, “Wow. How does he do it?” And I know that the answer is found in his faith in God and the amazing bond he has with his wife. I look at my brother Lenny and I see a sense of spiritual resolve I don’t think I can ever match. And I look at everything he and Sara have had to deal with in the past three and a half years, and I just shake my head in awe.
From premature babies to job losses to the passing of parents (both expected and unexpected) to hurricanes and more job losses – not to mention the events they don’t talk about – it’s baffling to see them remain so strong and resolved in their beliefs. It’s amazing to see how the crisis of life makes their relationship and marriage stronger. It’s inspiring to see them persevere and push forward and become even more interwoven into themselves with each event.
I realize that I started writing this entry about my brother, but it’s turned out to be about him and his wife. And that’s probably because you can’t talk about one without mentioning the other. You can’t spend time with one without seeing and recognizing how the other is always there. You can’t talk about Lenny and Sara without knowing in your mind that they are soul mates and where destined to be together.
And so I would like to share with you what I wrote for them on their wedding. I felt this poem was inspired at the time, and it’s nice to see that as they close in on nine years of marriage (their anniversary is in June), the meaning and spirit of this wedding toast is more alive than ever.
It is said every soul has a perfect companion
Stars that existed millions of years ago
Separated into two equal pieces
Causing each piece to search for the other
Lifetimes are spent in pursuit of each other
A journey to find that other half
That once made a perfect union
It is Sara, nurturing and radiant
And Leonard, passionate and enduring
That make this eternal sacrament possible
Through sacrifice, luck, and the grace of God
We are here today to celebrate the union
Or shall we say, reunion of these two souls
A match made in Heaven
With the blessing of both families
And the Lord our Father
So lets raise a toast
To the best big brother a guy can ask for
And to his beautiful wife
Sara and Lenny, you guys are the best and you have been there for me these past months just as you have been there for each other through everything. Thank you for the support. Thank you for the understanding. And thank you for being the inspiration you didn’t know you are to me.