Dear Thriving Bride,
I believe most women have certain things in common
. We want to be loved for who we are (on the inside and out) and to feel beautiful even when we are not feeling beautiful.
I recently spoke to my “brother” Mike and asked him to walk me down the aisle.
I have known Mike since I first arrived on the University of California, Berkeley campus almost 15 years ago, and we were part of a small group of East Coasters who ended up at Berkeley. So, we became close and Mike has seen me in almost every adult relationship I have had.
Mike is my brother by “experience”, even though we don’t share blood. I know, that no matter what, he will show up and support me whenever I need him to. I know he will beat bad boyfriends and hunt down the ones in hiding. Thankfully, I haven’t had to worry too much about bad boyfriends, but I know Mike is there when I need him.
I told you that I spoke to him the other day, but I did not tell you why.
Let me slow down and give you a little background. In 2001, my younger brother died in a car accident, one day shy of his 18th birthday. In 2007, my older brother died in Nigeria. I was not close to my older brother. In fact, he sexually and physically abused me and my younger brother. I did not have much to say to him, and when I was younger I always found myself shaking uncontrollably when he was around. Despite this history, his death made me realize that I had no brothers.
Today is day 82.
There are 82 days until I get married. I had a pact with my younger brother: when i got married, he would walk me down the aisle. I miss him even more now, but as I got really sad, I remembered a moment I had with Mike. After both of my brother’s had died, I found NY Yankees cap that belonged to my younger brother and gave it to Mike while I asked him to be my brother. He said he would, and we cried together on some street in New York city.
I miss my brother, but I needed to decide how to get the essence of my emotions and pack it into that day. I can’t change my parents’ behavior nor can I bring my brother back, but I can feel the love and support on my wedding day from my brother Mike.
Mike said he will be there. I get to have my brother walk me down the aisle. Figure out how you want to feel and find ways to make it happen. I wanted to feel loved and supported by my brother, and how lucky am I to receive this gift!