Today is National Sibling Day. ????????????
Today I want to take a moment and talk about our oldest son, Lucas. Luke turned two 10 days after Toby died. Many people said to us, when we expressed our fear and anxiety for him, “He’s too young, he won’t remember or understand.”
Well, I’m here to show you – you’re wrong. He absolutely understands and he does not miss a breath when someone talks to him, or us, as if he is an only child or if he and Zeke are our only two, or they just don’t mention Toby. At the grocery store. At school. At home. With our family. With a stranger.
Luke has been our rock since the day that Toby died. Luke was also there, unlike Dan and I, the moment Toby took his last breaths. Luke may have been nearly two, but he is one smart, tough, loving little boy.
It is on my hardest days, when I can’t hide the tears or during the first weeks of bringing Zeke home, when I cried daily because my heart was so fearful and so broken, missing his brother, that when he asked “Why are you crying, mommy?” and I answered “I miss Toby.” He said to me, “I miss him too, but he’s always right here (pointing to my heart).”
That’s our resilient son. The one who has welcomed his second brother. Stepped aside and loved him unconditionally, even when he wasn’t visible anymore. Talked about him daily and continues to tell us Toby’s likes, dislikes, activities, favorite animals and sports teams. He includes him in everything we do and is quick to tell Zeke a story about him while he’s playing with him on the floor.
“Me, Toby, & Zeke,” he says. To which I reply, “my three amigos.” That’s the way it is – to him and to us.
This, friends. This is the epitome of National Sibling Day. This is the innocence of a child who grieves for his brother daily, but, without knowing, shows his mom, dad, grandparents, cousins, and extended family and friends that even though we can’t see him, Toby’s right there – with Luke and Zeke.
If you know Luke, you’ve heard him talk about Toby without the blink of an eye. If you see Luke, in the near future, ask him about his brothers. I can’t guarantee it won’t make you teary-eyed, but I can guarantee it will put a little love and joy in your heart.