A Personal Loss, but Keeping the Hope

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Everything that has a beginning has an end. No matter if it’s a family member, friend, distant relative, pet, vacation or even a season in our life that was great. Tonight, I received the phone call you never want to get and hope in your lifetime it won’t happen (AGAIN). My baby brother passed away last night. From what I know, he went to sleep and didn’t wake up the next morning. It’s more of a shock right now for me like I’m having a bad dream. I had just emailed him a couple of weeks ago.

He was only 50 years old, 5 years younger than me. I raised him when we lived with our mother on the worst side of Chicago. Mommy worked and went to school. She counted on me to keep my brother safe. I did. I was considered in the neighborhood, “the crazy sister” because no one messed with my brother while I was alive. I really did earn that name but I was determined, he would not be a statistic. He would NOT join a gang, he would NOT do or sell drugs, he would NOT quit school and he would NOT just get by. And he didn’t. He excelled in school, graduated, went to college, got his Masters degree and earned a really good job. I was so proud of him.

He married a beautiful and wonderful lady and together they adopted my nephew when he was a baby. I wished our mom had lived to see this but unfortunately she had already passed away before he got married. She, too, would have been a proud mom and grandma! The first thought I had when my sister-in-law called me was, I didn’t want her to go through what I went through when my 1st husband died. So, I prayed for her and my nephew. The shock is with them too because my brother hadn’t been sick. But at least, he wasn’t in pain. God spared all of us that.

When things like this happen, we think of the loss first and rightly so. You just don’t think that you’ll outlive your children or younger siblings. It shouldn’t be that way. However, there is hope because it’s what is happening on earth that is sad. When we close our eyes and see the Savior, that is bliss. My hope is in The Lord even though I don’t understand His ways. My second thought was I’ve outlived my whole family and I’m truly alone. My sweet hubby cried with me and I cried a boat load of tears let me tell you. Then he said, “I know you feel alone right now, but you are not alone baby.” I grabbed hold of him and buried my face in his arms. Then, I remembered my T-shirt…

There are other wonderful people in my life and they are my family. I’m not going through this alone. My sis-in-law also has friends and family members around her and I am so glad and relieved. They live so far away and I was hoping she couldn’t turn to someone for help who is close by. God knows when we are weak who to bring around us with a hug and a kind word.   

Check out this post >>  Bad News is Good News

I shall remember my brother all the days of my life and what he meant to me. I remember how he and I loved comic books and superheroes.

I remember how much we loved to play board and video games. I remember when our mom bought us an Atari game system and we played that thing everyday.

I remember how he would follow me around when he was little and how big his cheeks were when he was a baby.

I remember when he came to visit me in Florida and I took him around town. He was a responsible young man who loved his wife and son and worked hard everyday. To me, he’ll always be my baby brother. 

My brother Ken and Sis-in-law
To you my loving Brother and Sister-in-law. I love you both.

God bless us all.

Kim McDougal

Kim is the founder and creator of Growing Up in Grace. By day, she's the Director of Interactive Communications for the Hispanic chamber located in Jax, FL. Kim also owns "Kim's Studio Art" where she creates and sells Wall Art Printables and "Kim's Handcrafted Cards" on eBay where she creates and sells handmade greeting cards.

  1. Oh baby girl! I am so sorry for your loss! No words can bring you comfort but we know that the comforter will walk you through this devastating news with grace and mercy that can lift the heart when our thoughts try to take us to another place. "But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head." Psalm 3:3. May God show you such rich, life-giving truths in you're season of heartbreak. Be encouraged today, my friend. God provides a double measure of joy on the other side of pain. I'm hear if you need a shoulder or a hug. I love you dear one!

  2. There aren't sufficient words for times like this—only the Holy Spirit can carry us through such seasons, but He will. Thank you for being such an amazing older sister to your wonderful baby brother. I will continue to pray for you, Connor, and Deborah during this time, to experience the all-surpassing grace of God as you walk out this time on earth and await your reunion with your mom and brother in heaven. Much love to you all.

  3. I know, Kim, that words can't heal the pain and sorrow you are feeling through the sorrow and tears of losing your brother. Praying that our wonderful Lord will hold you close and give you strength, peace and comfort in your time of need. God Bless you, Connor, Deborah and Ken in your time of need.

  4. Kim, I'm so sorry about brother and there's no words to express how deeply it hurts to lose someone you love. You're in my thoughts and prayer always.

Comments are closed.