By Mana Williams.
As we grow we begin to learn the significance of family. We learn how important it is to look after one another. We might, if lucky, meet someone with prestige and learn to love that person even though they ask for nothing in return. Then when that person passes away, we are reminded how much they meant to us and the difference they made without even knowing about it.
Eight years ago, our family was torn apart. Taken to a place that I could not control, my sister couldn’t control, my dad could not control and my mum could not control. My brother passed away. But every day I am still influenced by his little nags. To eat my peas before everything else, to look after my sister like a hawk and to watch over my family without being too obvious.
This Monday, I went to a funeral of a family friend of ours. (See The Martial Artist Blog) It reminded me of the love and compassion that my brother shared with us. To come home and ask your dad how their day was, what their boss had said that was completely stupid and how your sister’s friend was coping in their new home… Taken for granted was the days of old but today is not the same day that came yesterday and we remember it in silence solemnly by getting drunk and creating havoc at the pub.
He was my instructor, taught ITF Taekwon-Do for many years and was a hard guy to dispute, was brother Shane. Every argument finished with, “Do you wanna walk home?” The sausage rolls, three-minute-late to the school gate apologies from me and the kick to the stomach in training tended to be about as brotherly as my brother publicly was to me. A fierce and cunning older brother, someone who didn’t take shit from nobody. But behind closed doors was a brother who made time for adopted little brownie (Me). I would do supermans by balancing on his hands and feet, whilst Goku was fighting Majin Buu on the TV. Would cry at training on a Thursday night after being told off and given a hug to stop mum from getting involved. There was a balance in our relationship that I can only appreciate now as an older brother to my younger sister.
February the 17th was a strange day, to say the least. It was a Tuesday, for martial artists Tuesday is a day of training. A day to kick and be kicked. To break stuff and break yourself. This was a Tuesday. I remember vividly the call we received from a paramedic on the scene. A lady asking for the mother of a 27-year-old male at our old residence. I thought my sister got arrested!
After biking down to our old home, I heard crying coming from the bushes. My dad and sister, talking out the events that had occurred whilst in the scrub. Biking through the old villa and sneaking along the porch I was searching for my larger counterpart. Quickly glancing past his bedroom window, a place where I would previously knock for attention. Where I would knock to be seen. Where I would knock to say I’m finished and need something else to do. My young disillusioned mind stopped being so that day.
But that isn’t important. So much as the 27 years that preceded before my brother’s departure. Every sausage roll, every command at training, he was a soldier of a brother and I loved him. He taught me and many other students the value of hard work and above all love for your own family.
The values you pass on to other people make a difference. How you take the lessons taught and apply them to your own bag of knowledge and pass it forward to the next person.
Something else I definitely need to work on! My Late Friday Evening thought for you! Thank you for checking in.