Tonight I asked my brother if he would do my eulogy at my funeral, not if he would do a speech at my wedding, not if he'd be Godfather to my child, no, my eulogy. As you can imagine he was somewhat taken aback by this request, you see I forgot that I had already thought about this and let it marinate for a few days, this was the first he was hearing of it. I mentioned to him that neither Mum or Dad particularly wanted to do it, because they didn't know how they would feel on the day and whether emotionally they would be up to it, to which my brother responded "Well I don't know how I'll be on the day". Which to be honest took me aback a bit. You see I just figured Steven being Steven he will front up on the day, chat to a few people, introduce himself to a few randoms, tell them a few awkward or inappropriate funeral jokes and then take his seat at the front of the chapel and be his normal
stoic unemotional self. Then when he has a minute at home by himself he might have a bit of a cry, pull himself together and then be what he thinks he is, the rock of the family, the one who has the answers to all of the hard questions, the one who has the shoulder for everyone else to cry on.
I love my brother more than life itself and I would honestly throw myself in front of a car to save his life, yes even before I was dying I would have done this. I always wanted to be besties with my bro. We moved to Australia at the ages of 8 and 5, Steven being the youngest. I loved holding Steven's hand, he hated it, especially in public. You see I was never an outgoing kid, I didn't make friends easily, so for me, Steven was like a built-in friend, he couldn't reject me because he was family, but no, that didn't stop him from rejecting me either.
I was always in awe of Steven's ability to make friends when he was a kid. It didn't matter where we would go, whether it be the McDonald's playground or in a Dental surgery waiting room, Steven always managed to make a friend and I just didn't have that skill.
As we got older, I finally got some social skills and started to make friends and even scored myself a boyfriend at 14, yep he was my first, my first kiss, my first love, my first everything really and my brother had his friends and left school in year 10 to work, so we just grew further apart I suppose. Then there was the bombshell my Mum and Dad threw at us when I was 19, they'd decided to move back to Ireland as my granddad wasn't too well (yep he's still alive today) and my brother had to go with them. You see we didn't have any family in Australia, we moved out here in the 90's to no-one except my dad's mate and his dodgy wife (they're divorced now, so I can call her dodgy) we had no aunts or uncles, no blood at all, so Steven was under 18 and Mum and Dad made him go back with them, whereas I was 19 and could make the decision to stay or go.
Now you remember that amazing boyfriend that I had when I was 14, the my first's guy, yeah him, well he was still around and I decided to stay in a country where I had no family or real support all because I figured the first's guy, let's just call him.......umm......Liam, well I figured Liam and I would make a life together, we both had jobs, we'd rent a little flat, get married and have babies, well all was going to plan, well he was still around anyway and then 6 months out of Mum and Dad moving back to Ireland, "Liam" and I were at a concert in the city and we were meant to stay two nights. On the second day "Liam" started to act strange and said he didn't want to stay the second night for some stupid lame reason, so we ended up catching the train back and he wouldn't even get off at my stop with me to see me home safely. When I finally got home I rang his house and his sister informed me that he had gone out somewhere. Sorry? Excuse me? He couldn't stay in the city with me, but he could go out somewhere. Anyway the next day I phoned him and I still remember he was sitting on the toilet, yep classy and he simply said its over, it's you and blew raspberries in my ear and hung up. Yep, you heard it right, I was dumped by a guy blowing raspberries whilst he was taking a shit over the phone. Oh by the way, he was cheating on me and had been for weeks, that relationship also ended eventually, although they did get engaged and lived together in between, so she was way ahead of me in the relationships stakes.
So my brother went back to Ireland with the parentals and by the time they moved back, he had his long-term girlfriend and he was a man, so we had grown even further apart. We still lived in a different state and would see each other a couple of times a year.
Then the big C came and Steven being Steven put his Mr Fix it hat on and googled every treatment, every surgeon, every hospital, every statistic, it made him feel like he had some control over something that in fact was out of all of our control, his mantra became 'plan for the worst, hope for the best', I heard that saying more times than I've had enema's and as we all know, many an enema I have had. I think it was as much of a wake up call for him as it was for everyone else.
Steven and I have always had an up and down relationship, we to and fro and ebb and flow, it's been that way our whole lives. We know we both love each other and I often feel that for some reason he just won't let me love him as much as I want to, that may sound strange, but it's like there's this invisible wall there that he builds every second conversation we have, all I want is for him to love me as I love him, for our relationship not to feel like a constant tug of war. I want him to realise that I think he is one of the smartest people I know, I want him to know that we don't need to compete for our parents like we did when we were kids and most of all I wish that he knew that my love for him although it seems conditional it's in actual fact unconditional and remember Steven if I do come back as a ghost, your house will be my first visit and Marianne I promise to call ahead x
Stay fabulous rockstars and cuddle your brother or sister when you get a chance ❤️🤘🏼
My name is Lisa Magill and I have been navigating the minefield that is cancer since just months after turning 30, people have been saying to me for years that I should put my thoughts into writing and as time has progressed I thought I had left it too late, well here we are nearly 4 years in and for some unknown reason I've decided to start to write today.