There isn't a book or website or anything on "what to do and say when the half brother you never met and only recently found, loses his wife to a deadly disease". Yeah. Nothing.
My heart hurts for him. When I saw the fscebook post about her passing, I felt salty tears roll down my face. I immediately called my mom. She has never met him, but when things go wrong, we all run to our mommies. Pluus my husband was away on a business trip and I had a bad cold and it wasn't pretty. I didn't bawl, but yeah. I cried. My heart ached. I felt powerless.
I am a cold hearted you know what, cause if an acquaintance loses a family member or whatever, I think oh bummer, so sorry, but I do not shed a tear. Somehow blood runs strong cause I cried for someone I never met's loss.
I sent him a handwritten card. What the bleep do you say? Where is that self help, what to do when your never-met half brother's wife passes book when you need it most? What do you write? I think I scribbled out some lame crap, how I was sending healing prayere. I sent a small gift card to a grocery store cause what the hell will he do with the inevitable massess of flower bouquets? He can buy a steak or some good beer! I even wrote that in the card-not the lame bouquet part just the steak and beer part.
And then I waited. Full of guilt. I wanted to know if he got the mail. What he thought. I thought maybe this tragedy will bring us together. Then I prayed for forgiveness cause what kind of sick mofo am I? Thinking maybe he will reach out to me now that his life has crumbled? But its my mom's fault. She fed me the line, "he needs you and everyone right now. He needs family by his side".
And then he sent me a message on facebook, saying thanks, it means more than you know my sister. I was floored. I replied (don't reply urgentlyvwhen feverish folks) with some incoherent, my IQ is lower than the speed limit, babble about feeling his pain its some weird blood family thingy and I felt sad even if we are strangers and then I rephrased it a few times cause, well, I was feverish and merely thought, if he sees I am online and do not respond quickly he will think I don't care.
My heart still feels heavy when he posts online. I sometimes comment but feel like maybe I am over-stepping my bounds. But I can't ignore his pain. Sure we have never met. Sure we are only half-related. But my concious and blood command and demand that I care. So I pilot through this awkward time like walking on eggshells. I just want this unknown relative of mine to find comfort and it bothers me that I...in fact no one...can mak it better.