You know that old saying, let bygones be bygones…..Well, that is what tonight’s blog is all about.

I haven’t done any blogging for over a month and there is a really good reason why.  I couldn’t gather my thoughts, my heart and mind were consumed with worry and with grief and then came the sadness.

I have learned a lot in two months.  At the beginning of October, I went out to see my Dad to help him downsize his home and figure out ways for him to continue to age in place.  We never got to do either of those.  He passed away the night after I got there.  It was just he and I at his house and he collapsed and was gone in seconds.  He had made it known that he did not want to be resuscitated and I (we) honored that.  Forty days after my Dad passed away my brother passed away.  And, it is my brother’s passing that has prompted me to write this blog tonight.

Last year, my brother encouraged me to start writing….to start journaling as I was going through a series of surgeries.  It was some of the best advice I have gotten.  Little did I know that he would be adding many pieces of advice through the next year and a half. The passing of both these men hit all of us hard and it is in the lessons that they left behind that I am now taking solace.

These lessons begin here. The first is to love with all your heart.  Both of them loved their brides’ with a strong, caring, loving, and heartfelt love. And, they loved their families so very much. The second lesson is to live life to the fullest.  My Dad had many hobbies and projects going most of his life.  He and my Mom took us on many adventures. My brother was the same way. He spent time with family and friends, took his family to see different places, loved the outdoors and spending time in it, and spent time on his hobbies.  They both worked hard so that they and their families could live life to the fullest.  They were also both very generous, spiritual and faith filled men. It is through these examples that I see the lessons to learn.  In the end, I had wonderful relationships with both of them and it allowed me a window inside where I discovered what was most precious to each of them.  My Dad and I talked just about every Tuesday evening.  I named those calls Tuesday’s with Dad. Like the book, Tuesday’s with Morrie. I am so thankful for those phone calls and thankful for the conversations my brother and I had with each other. And, it is those conversations that have led me to write this piece.

My brother and I started texting and sending emails back and forth over the course of almost two years. He taught me many things during that time and the biggest one was “let bygones be bygones”.  The reality of this saying did not hit me until just a few days ago. You see, I was finally able to put all the pieces together as if I was looking at a puzzle and had just placed that final piece and, that’s how it hit me….I saw the whole picture.

Over the years we have all fought back and forth about this or that. After all, there are seven of us and then also my Mom and Dad. It was bound to happen for us to not see eye to eye on things all the time.  When there was one such occasion recently before we lost my brother, he and I were discussing it. And, me, being the person I am was trying to find a way to fix things….to be the peacemaker. When he said to me, Diane, maybe it’s best to let bygones be bygones and to live each day to the fullest and to focus on the important things.  You know, it wasn’t clear to me until the other day when I fully realized that here was a man that was nearing his last days and he had the infinite wisdom to realize that the silly little things we disagree over don’t mean anything in the reality of life. What really matters is that we love each other.  Sure, we will always have times where we don’t completely agree with someone else but it is such a small part of what we are here on Earth for and it is such a small part of our lives.

We are here to love, to build relationships with others, to be good to others, to be generous with our time and our treasures as these two men were, to use our gifts, to learn how to be the best person we can be before God calls us home.  And, to find the good in others, to encourage others to be the best they can be and to give them the tools to navigate life well and to the fullest. Over these last two years, my brother taught me all these things and he also taught me how to be strong and how to love his family as he loved them and how to be of service to others  And, I am so thankful to him for taking the time out of his last years here to help me grow and become a stronger, more loving, more giving, and forgiving person and to let those bygones be bygones and to let the past stay in the past where it belongs and most of all TO SEIZE EACH AND EVERY DAY AND MAKE THE MOST OF IT. THANKS MARK for all the life lessons and for all your encouragement.







  1. Words seem inadequate as I read about both of your loses, but want you to know how much I am touched by your writing and authenticity. Sounds like these insightful men have had a profound effect on your life, and I would imagine it was reciprocal as well. Thank you for sharing your writing- poignant and true.


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