I hope you will all indulge me as I share a personal story. I have shared about my twin brother, Russ, before so apologize to those who have heard this before.
In 1978, my twin brother and I were both expecting our first sons with our respective spouses. We were 25 years old. I was happily married, he was happily married, and our careers and lives were moving along well. My brother was working, during the summer, at a small liquor market to make extra money, when he was tragically shot to death by a 19 year old young man who took the $60 in the cash register and ran.
My sister-in-law delivered their baby 8 days after his death. I delivered my son 2 months later. My sister-in-law took "little Russ" back to Arizona to be near family and did an amazing job raising him alone. When "little Russ" was in 1st grade she met and married an incredible man who adopted my nephew. They had another child and have been a beautiful family from the start.
Meanwhile, back in California, my family blew up like a bomb. My parents had many problems before the murder, so this event triggered a chain of continuous disasters that has lasted for some of my biological family to this day. I will leave out the ugly details. I made a decision early on to allow my nephew and my sister-in-law to pursue their new lives without the interference of our drama. I kept in touch over the years, as did several other family members. I knew that God would create the right time and place for "little Russ" to ask about his biological father and want to be in touch with me. My brother's memory was kept alive by my dear sister-in-law even though a new family had been created.
Well, this Christmas, my nephew's wife sent her annual Christmas card with a message stating that it was time we all get together. She and I have been e-mailing for a month, getting to know each other and setting up a visit.
Today was that day. Even though I had seen "little Russ" a few times over the years, this felt like the first real meeting. He has two darling, young sons, and his wife is as adorable as her pictures and e-mails. My husband and I drove to their home only 60 miles away for lunch and a magical afternoon. The weather was a crystal clear, 80 degree, January day. Their lunch was perfect, and the conversation was as natural as if we had always known each other. I took a homemade apple pie which they really appreciated. I brought some photo albums and let Russ pick any pictures he wanted of my brother. We played with my grand nephews and the 3 year old started calling my Grandma Leslie (I'm his great aunt, but who am I to argue with that adorable label?) We talked non-stop and left before dark, vowing to get together again so they can meet my three boys, Russ' cousins. We felt the presence of my brother, my dad, and God shining down on our reunion.
I'm still floating and really appreciate you letting me share.
BTW~ Big Russ was 6'7" tall.
My dad was 6'6" tall.
Little Russ is 6'6" tall.....so he's not so "little" any more.....
I'm 5'9" and he dwarfs me.....
Peace to you all, today. Never give up~Miracles do happen!!!!!