Tomorrow I turn 32, wow where did that come from?
I am a mother, a wife and my own person with hopes and dreams.
For the past 16 years, I have been living as a twinless twin.
You see, many people know, if you know me personally that at the age of 15, my twin brother Ashley suddenly passed away.
There was no reason or so they say, why this happened, his heart stopped during physical exercise and it was so sudden, we didn’t even have time to say goodbye.
The last memory of him was me arguing with him about a TV aerial, you remember when we had the big box TV’s, well it was something to do with one of those.
I didn’t even say goodbye, he left and he was gone, just like that. We received a phone call later that day to say he had taken ill and he had sadly passed away while competing in a cross country run for his school.
My brother was everything you could want in a son, I look at my boys now and I hope that they turn out like their uncle.
I hope they are funny, caring, handsome and humble.
My brother was such an amazing person. Like no other.
I remember how he used to laugh, how he crinkled up his nose, how he used to gel his hair in the mirror, the way he used to smell.
You see twins, have a bond like no other.
Since birth I had been with him everyday, we shared birthdays, we shared games, we shared jokes, he really was my best friend.
When he died, half of me died with him, it literally felt like I had been chopped in half and for many years I struggled with who I was and where I belonged.
After he passed away, it was hard, my parents as wonderful as they are, were grieving, seeing them both in pain, in a home that was filled with love and happiness, was no longer the same, it was heartbreaking. The curtains were drawn, the house felt empty, my brothers room now a shell with all his belongings in stood still, like a time capsule and it would be like that for many years.
I went back to school but that was tough, people stared at me, it was like people didn’t know how to speak to me or what to say.
I felt like a freak, someone who everyone knew but not for the right reasons, for reasons that were so sad.
I was the twinless twin.
Birthdays followed, many birthdays….. but they weren’t the same…. I always felt sad, I always felt bad for being joyful and I always felt guilty for living when he was gone. I often wished that everything could be flipped and that I could be the one who wasn’t here instead of him. I felt like they had taken the wrong twin and in fact he was the one that could make his mark on the world, not me.
I struggled for many years with his passing, although you probably didn’t know this as I was always very good at hiding this.
As I matured into a women, I slowly began to find myself, to figure out how to be Lucy, to be someone independent of a twin status and to not be half the person I had always believed I was.
I started to learn and to develop, I met a wonderful man, now my husband rick who guided me and supported me when I fell down.
I chose to become someone I could be proud of, and someone who could make a mark on the world, to have a life worth living.
I know that life is so precious and that its so important not to waste it, that we are so lucky to be alive because some of us just don’t have the choice.
I think about my brother now and although it saddens me that he cant be here to share my achievements, to be an uncle, a bother in law, to be the amazing son he would have been. I feel thankful that he was here for the time he was here, that I was lucky to have known such an amazing person for the duration I did, that I can be proud to call him my brother.
My brother isn’t gone, maybe in the physical sense, but I see him all around me. When I practice walking meditation and I notice the trees, our eyes have seen the same. When I breathe the air that I breathe, it was the same air he breathed, when I look at the sky, it’s the same sky he also looked upon. His essence is all around me and his love is in my heart.
So happy birthday to me and happy birthday to you Ash. May our journeys cross again and may his essence live through me as I slowly change the world one breath at a time. If your reading this, don’t ever leave on an argument, don’t ever think that today wont be your last and always live with intention, what can you do to make your mark on the world, how can you live with purpose!