Last night I had the most incredible dream.
Really it was more like a nightmare, because in it my older brother was in an accident. He was in the hospital and the odds were not in his favor. The whole family was there.
The doctors decided the best treatment was some kind of air-chemical infusion. Not exactly sure on that part, only that it made sense in dream-world. So Chip's (my older brother) chest puffed up immediately due to the treatment.
He was in bad shape. He couldn't talk or communicate in any way.
Soon after administering the medicine, the staff realized it was the wrong treatment. It was irreversible, and untreatable. Although we begged and pleaded, there was simply nothing they could do. Chip was dying and would be gone soon.
Then I opened my eyes.
It felt so real, and my heart was racing. 'We have to do something,' I thought. But soon thereafter the grogginess retreated and I realized, 'it was just a dream!'
With that revelation joy replaced anxiety. Elation erased panic.
But my conscious mind continued to press forward, despite me trying to linger in the happiness of everything being o.k.
I couldn't stop the the next moment from arriving, and bringing with it the fact that Chip has been in Heaven now for 10 years. It wasn't an accident that took him, nor was there any hospital staff that mistreated him.
Regardless, there was a tangible sadness that swept in and took up residence for a few minutes. The roller coaster of emotion - the fear of the nightmare to the euphoria of waking up and realizing it wasn't true - to remembering that Chip is in fact gone - was taxing.
Chip was a great older brother. He couldn't talk. Or walk. His cognitive development was somewhere between 2 weeks and 2 months. His life expectancy was a mere 2 years. Yet he defied the odds, thriving in a home that loved him unconditionally by parents that sacrificed willingly for 36 years.
I sure do miss him.
I wish Nate could have met his Uncle Chip.
They both would have been better because of it.