A Big Moment.

There's many life events that you expect to share with your family. Getting Married, having children are a couple of the big ones; there's also a range of other dates that sit in and around the big ones like birthdays, family meals or day trips, some planned without so much of a thought.
You picture everyone meeting, chatting, laughing and joking around. It's always a happy scene. They make for happy memories. We like to focus on them. My life is full of them little moments and it makes me heart feel fulfilled daily.

Every moment matters.

But sometimes it feels like we are programmed to focus on the bad moments. It's because we feel those, we feel that emotion, that sinking gut and heavy heart - just like it's all happened right now.. All. Over. Again. We remember the pain that is associated with that memory. That powerful, horrible memory.
It's a memory I know that will stick with me for life. A memory that will make my heart pang and prick my eyes to a few tears, every single time.

That memory is being the day I nearly lost my baby brother.

We actually became that close to nearly losing him. Forever.

It's the day, my heart, my soul and general being learnt what the pain of losing someone really close, could be like.
It was indescribable.

That phone call from Mum was earth shattering. Adrenaline, Emergency Operation, Sedated. Words that I somehow picked up through her sobs. Words, I never expected to hear - ever.

Waiting. That was the hardest part in those hours.
It was Easter Sunday and everyone was revelling in Bank Holiday weekend. Family meetings and relaxing eating copious amounts of chocolate.
I waiting to hear if my brother was even alive.
That puts things into perspective doesn't it?


The second I saw him laying there, I wanted the floor to swallow me up. I wanted to do something to change everything - anything that meant what was happening, wasn't. I guess that's a moment. Seeing your baby sibling laying in a way you'd never imagined. Tubes, tabs, leads, beeps.

Seeing his chest rise and fall mechanically.

You picture some type of image in your head. You've seen Casualty before, so you think you know.
But that's nothing in comparison. You don't see the bruises, the swelling, the tired eyes or clammy head - because it's not real. This was.. to be honest, too real.

I stroked his arm with a single finger and went "Oh Char, what are you doing laying here, eh?" half expecting him to open his eyes or answer. To be frank a grunt would've been pretty pleasant! But, seriously baby brother, what were you doing there? What had you ever done to deserve being treated in such a cruel way.

Walking away I darted my eyes everywhere but at my Mum or my Dad, 'cos I knew right then; I wasn't strong. I wasn't strong enough to cope with this massive moment.
I wanted to be strong for everyone, to even try and lighten the mood but in actual fact I attempted to keep a strong face.
It melted as fast as it was placed.
I wasn't okay, and this whole thing wasn't alright. I didn't want to lose him. I love him. He lights up too much in every one's life to be gone.
He's the person you chuckle about when your mum mentions him, or the person who you just think "what's he like?!". He's the person who's on your side and understands what you may be feeling despite not necessarily agreeing. He's kind and too complimentary to me. He repeats things a hundred times and for that alone deserves the world.

And at that moment I felt a little bit incomplete. The doctor came and spoke to us, I say us, but Mum and Dad because to be quite frank I didn't hear a word he said. I just stared at the only person I could think about, in the last few days prior.
With silent tears falling.
Thinking, thinking about all them times we shared together. All them not so massive moments. Times of eating tea together around the table or watching Love Actually with popcorn and singing along to Bill Nighy. Or the time he made me laugh so much by doing "A hundred ways Batman could die off the sofa" - still makes me smile when I think of it!
I didn't know if them memories was going to be a part of a eulogy - not that I could actually speak one out loud as too much emotion would come out. But I'd write one. I'd write a thousand, because actually there's a thousand ways to write good about him.

My heart was too heavy to contemplate that. So many memories flashed through my head in them days. I stopped and thought "Sh*t, is that it?" was I actually mentally preparing myself to be able to grieve? I probably was in round about way.
Talks were always of it potentially getting worse. HOW could it get WORSE?

I'd never imagined seeing him a couple of days before, knowing he's really ill with tonsillitis; suffering with major swelling around the throat and barely being able to talk in anyway comfortable. For him to resort to finger spelling so that I could communicate with him (honestly one of the reasons why I adore him!) shows how desperate he must've been feeling.
The thought never crossed my mind that he would end up on an incubator and put into a heavily medicated coma.

How many times have we all suffered with a sore throat? It just seemed wrong.
How is it I could've lost my brother, to something that started as a common illness?

I know it got worst and everything became infected - but it just seemed too out there to happen to my baby brother. To the baby of our family.
The thought of him losing his life before mine was unbearable. I'm his oldest sister and somehow I'm supposed to be the person who helps with these things.

There's many life events you expect to share with your family, but I wasn't expecting this.

P.S Ironically today is Sibling Day in the USA.


  1. Oh Imogene this is awful. I'm so sorry you all went through such a terrible thing. How is he doing now?

    1. It was pretty awful and luckily now just a bad memory! He's recovering now at home and able to speak a bit better; in a completely different place to where he was, thankfully!
      Thank you for your concern, means a lot :) x