A kindly Brexit?
by John Darvall
Today would have been my brother’s 66th birthday. Francis would have celebrated it in his unusual way, doing all the things he loved and being with those who loved him. But no, he didn’t make it as he died on the 6th December last year, my sister’s birthday. She would have been happier with a wash bag.
My brother lived his life on his terms and, when those terms changed, others helped him get back on track. Francis would be the first in your corner and the last to leave your side with his generous, kind, loving heart combined with creativity that knew no bounds or boundaries. His pictures, from various phases of his painting hang proudly on my walls. One water-colour that he painted 20 years ago when we were on holiday is one of the most precious things I own.
Francis was no saint. Who is? It would be trite to wax on about him yet, as I reflect on my brother and on my own last fifteen months, the one thing that stands out as the greatest attribute anyone can. It is kindness. Love is okay, but it is often confused with lust, sometimes mixed up with duty and invariably comes with strings attached. Generosity has the same conditions. Kindness is whole. In its true form it requires nothing than for you to show it. Kindness doesn’t even require acknowledgment. My brother was kind, truly kind. I try to be kind and I could do a lot worse than aim at his mark.
This year will see a lot happen. I predict nothing. Polls will tell us one thing and the opposite will happen. Bet against any poll. The world holds its breath for the 45th President of the United States to take office, start doing deals and building walls. As a country we about to divorce the EU and anyone who has been through a divorce (I have two under my belt) will tell you that you may start out in one place but you never, ever end up where you think and, long after it’s over, it is not. It might as well be called a Pan Fried Brexit. A kinder country would be a good thing, kindly respecting both sides of the argument. A kinder world would be even better.
This year I will try harder to be kinder. I urge you to do the same too. I thank my brother, my erasable, clever, creative brother for reminding me just how important being kind truly is.
A kindly world. One person at a time.
Thank you, and you too.
Lovely to read about your Brother, John. When we lose those close to us it is a time to reflect, as you know only too well. Our lives are precious, sometimes short but it is all about what mark we leave, and were we able to make a difference. Not in a large way, but just holding out our hand to steady someone when needed or to smile at someone. It could be the first smile they have received in days. If we can be remembered with fondness and affection, job done.
Kindness and respect two words not used often enough.
Thank you Jane x
What a lovely way to remember your brother John!! You are already an extremely kind person John and I have the greatest respect for you! I know I certainly could not have coped with all everything that has happened to me if it was not for people like you being as lovely as you are! Yes, REALLY!! You will always be a gold nugut in my eyes!!! Love Jo xxxxx
Thank you Jo