Friday, June 24, 2011

I'm coming home

My youngest brother, CHova, is 10 years younger than me. That's a pretty big age gap for siblings and it meant that we lived parallel, concurrent lives - under the same roof but at entirely different stages, spaced too far apart to share experiences and be contemporaries. I've always felt badly that for most of his youth CHova was practically an only child, at home alone, in the crumbling estate that is my family's house in Markham, with my mom and Big D (two people who are notorious in their complete and utter inability to understand adolescence). Bruce Wayne has always stepped up and I'm glad that my brothers have each other for besties. It makes a big difference.

CHova has turned out to be a really good kid. He's smart, hard-working, responsible, funny and socially at ease. And he's cool. It's nice to have a sibling who's cool and stays on top of shiz. I sometimes look at him and marvel at how he turned out - almost against the odds.

At Kung Kung's funeral, CHova came out of nowhere and gave one of the most moving speeches I've ever heard in my life. It was funny, it was poignant, it was heartfelt. He told stories about my Kung Kung and how one of the things he'll always remember is how my Kung Kung stood up for him one time when he was just an 8 year old kid, when an older dude cut in front of CHova in line at McDonald's. He told another story of how my Kung Kung took him to see Gladiator and they emerged from the theatre in the pouring rain, how my Kung Kung looked at him, paused and said, "I guess we better make a run for it" and how Kung Kung outran him to the car. CHova closed his speech with the chorus from "Coming Home" - a song I'd never heard before that day...and now whenever I hear it I cry. And yeah, I know it's Diddy and I know it's kind of cheesy, but Skyler Grey kills it and the sentiment gets me every time. When I think of my Kung Kung and Poppa and Grandpa Reid and well, every old person in the world going home, with those words ushering them into the great beyond, it's unbelievably bittersweet.

All this is to say that I love CHova and I'm proud of him.

I'm continuing to experience family dramas with my dad and it's annoying and most of all saddening that someone could be so lucky as to have my siblings and I for family and not give a rat's. I look into the Big Yam's cute little face (seriously - how he is so cute? Cute expressive eyes, cute button nose, cute little mouth, cute little teefs, cute chubby cheeks, cute straight eyebrows, cute round head - there isn't a single feature that ISN'T cute individually and when put together becomes the apotheosis of cuteness) and I'm just sorry that my dad chooses to miss out. And I think of how awesome it would have been for Kung Kung and Poppa and Grandpa Reid to know this little being that they're a part of.

But they're home. And when it's my turn to go home I'll tell them how grateful I am for my family.


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