So my brother died a year ago today. I’ve spend most of the week feeling very up and down – but by the time today came around, it went great, because I got the best hugs I could ask for: his.
I drove out to Te Henga (aka Bethell’s Beach) this morning, which is where we scattered his ashes. It’s mid-Spring here, and west coast beaches are known for being blustery and wild at the best of times. Today was no exception. Didn’t stop me getting right out into the water in my togs and saying hi. Granted, I only went in a very little way and knelt in the surf – but the greeting was strong enough to knock me over more than once!
Did you know oceans could hug? I didn’t before today. But he was there, in that ocean. Every surge of surf had meaning, and we had a full-on conversation. I cried a bit. Laughed some. Sang, even (and I am not the world’s best singer – I got laughed at by my brother-the-ocean for that one, and knocked over again. Water up my nose!). Ultimately, I felt like I had seen him in the flesh to tell him I love him. Because I got to tell him how much I’ve missed him. I caught him up on everything: family, lovers, Apollo’s driving, my impending trip to Melbourne, my migraines, the lot.
Eventually, finally, I had to go. But now I know he’s scattered everywhere. He is Te Henga. Te Henga is him. He is my brother the ocean, whose hugs are strong again.