Today is a sad day for me. I am remembering my late big brother, Guru Ralph, who died 14 years ago at the age of 59, and he’d be 73 on this day March 26th. It’s hard for me to talk about, painful and all, but I think it’s always therapeutic to talk about difficult feelings instead of keeping them bottled up. I had a life time of that, and it’s toxic to always keep painful feelings suppressed.
From the get-go my brother was always my hero. Once I hit puberty though we came to logger heads. He was very protective naturally, being a ten years older. But I was having none of it once I hit my teens. Not him or any one else was going to tell me what to do. I was a sixties wild child.
Our age difference meant, he grew up in the 50s and was a die hard greaser. Black and white t-shirts, blue jeans with cuffs, Converse running shoes, Brill Cream, shirt sleeves with his smokes rolled up in them, Rock & Roll music and the whole deal. I was the opposite, or so I thought.. I was what I call a fringe hippie, not quite old enough to be a full fledged hippie, but I was determined to try hard to be one.
I learned so many things from my brother Ralph and especially once I became an adult. He taught me by example, how to live life with grace, humour, humility, strength, and courage in the face of adversity.
We always had a laugh about his nickname Guru Ralph because he’d come up with these crazy sayings, like ” Do unto others , then beat it.”
Many years ago when I was young and foolish, I resented him trying to tell me what to do, now I wished my big brother was around to do just that, because he lived up to his nickname, Guru Ralph, in lots of ways. He was full of wisdom. My big brother Ralph was the best brother a little sister could ever have, I’ll miss him always, and he’ll always be my hero.