Thoughts in silence

Its just after 1:00am. I find myself sitting alone downstairs except for the fact I’m surround by our pets (of course I’m alone, everyone else is asleep like they should be).

Just outside the sliding glass door lays our pitbull… every so often turning her head to look at me, probably wondering why I’m inside where its warm and she’s outside in the cold. To my left sits our chihuahua… the little bastard is wide awake because I’m eating left over dinner and he wants a bite (and of course its left over, I was asleep all day and I slept right through dinner). Not far to my right is my cat. I’ll be honest here… hes my favorite of the three. If I only had one ounce of energy left in my body, and I could only pet one of them one last time… I’d use that energy to slap the chihuahua…. damn I hate that dog.

But moving on…

Today we met with the Radiation Doctor. He’s a really smart man and already has a good plan of what we’re going to do. It feels like the closing of a chapter because we’ve finally met with all the different doctors. Its good to know what each of them has in mind and how we’re going to puzzle everyone’s plans into one big strategy.

I guess you’re all assuming that’s what I’m going to write about. Normally you’d be right, but I’m going to save that for another day.

Tonight I’m going to write about something a little more emotional. As I was setting up the scene earlier, I forgot to mention I was sitting here with my eyes clouded in tears. I suppose that tiny detail changes the tone a bit.

You see… I don’t know if everyone shares this same trait, but when I’m alone and the TV is off, and there is no radio and no other sounds around… just silence… I find myself thinking. I just think about anything and everything really. I remember funny stories, sad times, or maybe even embarrassing moments (those are the worst because I re-live all the feelings I had when it happened).

Right now is one of those times I find myself just thinking.

I was remembering back to a week or so ago when my dad called me. He didn’t call for any reason, he just wanted to know how I was doing. I really appreciate those calls. Not just from my dad, from everyone… it really brightens up my day. Anyways, near the end of our conversation, he said something amazing. He told me “son, if I could take this from you… I would… you know that, right?”. I didn’t even have to think twice about my response and quickly replied “I know you would”.

Ironically, a few days later, a friend and I were having a text message conversation. He said something nearly identical. In his own words: “I’m sorry bro I honestly wish I could take this one for you”. When I read this I instantly thought back to when my dad had said the very same thing.

Humans are fixers. A window breaks, we replace it. A bridge falls down, we rebuild it. When someone is struggling under the burden of a sandbag across their shoulders, we take it.

I love these people for wanting to take this burden for me, and I know there are more out there that would do the same as they would. They don’t need to say it, I know in my heart they would.

But as they would take this from me, I would take it for them. I am proud this is one sandbag I’m carrying and not anyone else.

It would literally kill me inside to see one of my friends go through this. One of my family members… my parents or siblings… my wife, my son or my daughter (or anyone else for that matter). As hard as it is for me to struggle through this, I could never handle watching one of them suffer. I find comfort in knowing that its me, and not them.

I know this doesn’t mean everyone around me is immune, but at least I’ve shed light on it a bit. So many people I’ve told my story to have all said they want to get an MRI “just to be sure”. GOOD! EVERYONE SHOULD!

This is sorta like the time I got way too drunk at my wedding and couldn’t even walk myself to my room (embarrassing moment? I think so). Since then I’ve been able to watch my friends get married and tell them right before their wedding “DON’T GET TOO DRUNK LIKE I DID!”. Its a life lesson that someone has to endure and everyone else learns from. That’s why we study history, isn’t it? At least that’s what they tell me.

The best part is, that sandbag… the one that wants to sit on my shoulders and grind me into the ground… I don’t carry it alone. Everyone I know has torn it to pieces and grabbed a handful of sand. Its not just me, nor would it be just one of them, its all of us doing it together.

Everything from a hug to a handshake to a “get well” card, it takes a little piece and helps me stand up a little more.

You hear people talk about eternal life and living forever. I don’t know about the whole living on a cloud up above thing, but I do know this: there are people that died hundreds or thousands of years ago, we read about them in history books, and to this very day their life is still discussed in our daily lives… if that’s not eternal life I don’t know what is. They are literally living forever. Life after death so to say.

Your friends and family are the people that will carry on your stories and your life; pass them to their children and tell their friends about it. Amazing isn’t it?

So never think you’re more important than those around you; everyone around you is who makes you important.

  • Nicole P

    I find your thoughts very humbling, I?m very sorry you are going through this. It sounds like you have an amazing support system full of friends and family. The way you approach life and this situation in particular not having known you well even in high school, makes me glad to begin to know you now even through this ugly situation. God bless you and your family. By the way your children are just so beautiful, you can tell just by their smiles they are awesome little people.

  • Chris R

    Beautiful Brandon. ?Blessings, Prayers and Good Thoughts to/for you and your whole family as each of them carry a handful of this Burden. ?You are Loved. ?Your writings and thoughts remind me of that other account lived and written so long ago but always present in our lives today. ?I can’t be the only one who you gave a reminding glimpse of Christ’s last days and his possible thoughts and feelings during his Atoning Sacrifice for Man. ?You are Amazing. ?

  • Azmaudy

    Brandon, you are an amazing man. Instead of having a pity party, you are so ready to fight this ugly battle that I know you will win. I’m so glad that you have a great support group that includes family and friends. Have a great time on your upcoming trip and make beautiful memories, so that the next time you are alone with your thoughts, that those happy memories will make you smile knowing that you beat this and will have a long lifetime ahead of you to make more happy memories. You and Monique are always in my thoughts and prayers. Love you both…….Maudy

  • And like Ive said a million times if I could take this from you I would. ?It breaks my heart everyday to see you have to go through this. ?Between being a guinea pig for new meds, the seizures and weird sleeping patterns. ?Most days I want to scream at the top of my lungs why this had to happen to you to us, but I know in the end we will be stronger. ?And you sharing your experience with others helps bring more awareness to the horrible disease. ?

  • Syl

    Beautifully n well written.

    It’s so good to have friends n a support group that can help u as u go through this hurdle — ur not alone. We’re all there beside u. So, hang in there.

    Listen to that inner voice n seek His guidance, wisdom n He will direct ur path.

    Enjoy ur visit in Jersey w/ur family; make lots of memories that u can look back on when you’ve overcome this disease.

    Remember, your in our thoughts n prayers daily.

    Syl n Dave

  • Swdaughter2022

    i could have not wrote it any better ,u know Uncle an I love you very much and u are with us in our hearts ….maybe we can come home this summer for a short we will see. u take care and know Minnesota is praying for u.

  • Swdaughter2022

    uncle wants to know if your dog is a [ KROQ] KICK DOG?????

  • Maria L

    Brandon, what wonderful words of wisdom from such a young man! Your wife is beautiful on the inside and out. What a lovely little family you have!! As Chris said, you too gave me a glimpse of Christ’s last days. Thank you so much for writing this for everyone to become more aware. Maria Landon