Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of my little brother’s death.
He died at 10 months old, from a heart attack induced by asthma combined with pneumonia.
His little heart just could not cope with it, and stopped.
It was two weeks before Christmas.
Shitty things still happen at Christmas.
People don’t stop getting sick.
People don’t stop dying.
Children don’t stop dying.
I know this sounds morbid, but it’s true.
I’m certain this is part of the reason my Mother is so obsessed with making Christmas full of lights and laughter and family and love.
She wants two things, to spend as much time with her loved ones as she can because she knows full well it can end all too soon, and to fill the horrible void of an empty place at Christmas.
They have hardly any photos of my brother.
In a world before digital cameras and smart phones, you just sort of stop taking photos by the time the fourth one comes along.
What could happen?
I wish they had more photos.
You can give a family the gift of photos in a situation like this.
If there is someone who should be at your Christmas celebration this year, but isn’t, consider donating their $40 to Heartfelt instead.
Heartfelt is a group of amazing volunteers who donate time and skills to give families in shitty situations (like my parents – or seriously ill children) memories. Beautiful memories in the form of a photo shoot.
Because of the generosity of the volunteers the cost of the entire shoot (with prints) is only $40.
Imagine being able to give the gift of memories for a family in need this Christmas.
Because I can’t get my little brother a present, I will give $40 for someone else to have photos with their little brother, their darling son, their beautiful grandson.
Memories are worth it.
*This is not sponsored in any way at all – I just really respect and admire everything that heartfelt does and I hope their services can be utilised by all who need it, although I wish they weren’t needed – shit things happen.