watercolor of pear by emily weil

daily painting | single pear

This morning I am thinking things like, “What would Jamey do?” My brother was so stoic, accepting; even fatalistic. In his 16-month decline from brain cancer I never once heard him complain or feel sorry for himself. I thought that was remarkable. (The nursing facility staff loved him.)

So I’m reframing my current life situation with that in mind. No resistance, no self-pity. I’ll adapt and find what I need, even if I don’t know what that is yet. 

Another thing I admired in him was his sense of civic duty. He helped the Dipsea foot race run more smoothly for 40 years, purely for the love of the race. He served on the board of his condo organization, wanting to contribute out of a sense of responsibility to give back. 

I was told the Dolphin Club in SF lowered their flag to half-mast in honor of him; he was remembered as someone who offered helpful advice and support to other bay swimmers. I am so moved by that (he was a life-long member, which means his photo is up in the club and at some point I’ll go visit it to pay my respects; I loved hearing his stories of different swims, including, amazingly, swimming under the Golden Gate Bridge from SF to Marin). 

So, here’s to you, my beloved big bro. You were respected and admired for the goodness of your soul and your generosity and selflessness and brains and integrity. I hope to become more like you.

7″ x 6″ ink, watercolor on paper