It’s a story that continues to be one my favorites.
The night before my first 70.3 race, full of nerves and trying to push doubts away, a text message appeared on my phone. It was from my brother.
“All you have to do to make us proud tomorrow is get to the starting line,” he wrote.
It was one of the most meaningful things anyone ever said to me. And it’s no surprise it came from my brother.
Brian is four years my junior and my only sibling. Growing up we had moments of being thoroughly annoyed with each other, but as we got older, we became closer. At one point, we had a strange mind-meld going where we didn’t finish each other’s sentences, we said the same thing at the same time. We’d be having a conversation that others in the room couldn’t follow as both of us made the same obscure mental jumps. Linear thinking was something we both eschewed.
Today is my brother’s birthday and it’s his last one before entering the next phase of his life: Fatherhood. Any day now my sister-in-law will give birth to their first child. My kid brother will be a dad and I get to be an aunt.
Does it blow my mind?
Because my brother is going to be a great dad.
He has energy and wit and intelligence that are all his own. He has the stubbornness and concern of our mother, the awe and curiosity of our father and as he’s grown up he’s cultivated the patience of our dad we both aspire to, but often fail to succeed in achieving.
Oh, my dear brother is not perfect. But in his imperfections are the markings of compassion and tolerance and humility.
Those are the qualities which make him a great brother.
They are same the qualities which will make him a great father.