Marion and I saw Dr. Zhivago when we were young. The image of little Yuri at the burial of his mother still haunts me; little did I know that I would live this terrifying scene when my brother Johnny was in a fatal car accident on December 1st, 1968. I was only 16.
It was a bitter cold day in December as I stood by the grave watching the coffin lowered into the ground. Tears freezing on my face as I cried profusely. The sting of death was more unbearable than the biting cold wind.
December is a month of mixed emotions for me: agony and ecstasy. It can be a difficult time for those who have lost loved ones: the people we cherish will forever be missed at the dinner table.
When my cousin Marion came to visit in October, Toronto was on our list of places to go. Not only to see the CN Tower …
But also to see the house where my family lived when Marion came to visit in 1965. She remembered it well and took this photo, recalling many memories. The owners were kind enough to welcome us in.
This photo is from 1965 with Johnny and my mom, taken by the fireplace. The big mirror is still there, even though several families have lived there during all these years.
Marion took more photos inside the house and talked about Johnny as we drove to the cemetery. It was a very emotional experience to share this moment with her. My dear cousin Marion is the sister I never had.
Yesterday we celebrated the 1st Advent of Christmas. ‘Tis the season to be jolly. I enjoy the festivities: gathering with family and friends, the sparkling lights that adorn the houses, beautifully decorated Christmas trees and the sound of holiday music, but there’s always sadness in a corner of my heart.
The joy of the Christmas season – celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ – fills my heart with peace, hope and love.