Friday, April 23, 2010

Kitty and Baby Davey

The little boy in the in the red and white striped shirt who looks like Ray Charles is my baby brother.
His bloggy name shall henceforth be Baby Davey,
(Unless I think of something more fitting in the future)
The little boy girl in the front of the photo is unfortunately me. (We can talk about that awkward stage on another day....all I can say is pixie cut AND cat eye glasses....really mom why didn't you just write dork across my forehead in sharpie marker and be done with it.)
My baby brother is holding Kitty.
Kitty and Baby Davey
Only Kitty in the picture does not resemble the real Kitty.
The real Kitty when first presented to BD (Baby Davey for short) was like most stuffed animals.
Soft and furry.
With plastic cat eyes and synthetic fur parts.
I don't remember that Kitty. I'll just have to take my mother's word on that.
I remember the Kitty in the picture.
All white cloth, smooth like a bed sheet, with eyes and nose embroidered on.
My hazy memory remembers  pink and blue stitching.
The legend of Kitty was that she was replaced literally one piece at a time.
As Kitty would lose a eye or a tail or a paw,
It would be replaced by a fix-it-all mother.
With an old bed sheet and embroidery floss.
At first it was only a tail..
Then a leg or an ear....
Until finally there was nothing left of the original Kitty
except for a little stuffing and a lot of memories.
Kitty was loved into a completely new being.
My brother BD is a little like Kitty.
He has gone through his own physical metamorphosis.
His body has been altered by an undiagnosed neurological illness.
He endured the scars and surgeries and skin grafts for flesh eating bacteria.
He recovered from severe burns to his hand after a handful of sparklers exploded like a bomb.
He doesn't really like to ever focus on those events and that is not what I wanted to talk about either.
I want to talk about his stuffing.
Because I don't know if I have ever adequately conveyed to him,
Just how amazing he is.
I have watched over the last ten years as my annoying, pestery, baby brother has morphed
into this
amazing man.
He never complains or reminds anyone of the things he cannot do.
Or the parts of him that were replaced.
He just moves forward with strength and dignity and amazing ability.
And I forget about what he has had to endure.
He is softer, kinder and wiser for the wear.
I am so proud of him.
I am proud that he is my baby brother.
Like Kitty he is different than what he started out as.
I think God has loved him into a completely new being.

P.S. Shhhh .....Don't tell BD about this post. He will only get the "big head". After all, he is still my pesky little brother.

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Victoria said...

BD will probably cry like a baby when he reads it. It brought tears to my eyes... very sweet.

Bonnie said...


Heidi said...

LOVE that memory of Kitty! It was so fun to remember the central part that that one stuffed animal played in all our lives. I had all but forgotten that childhood memory. And thanks for the tearfest! Only you could write such a beautiful tribute to such a wonderful brother who I admire and respect like no other. Love you! I'm all amongst yourselves! :)

David Lauck said...

Wow! I have been waiting for my post, but I did not expect to be in tears! Yes, this is BD...waaa waaa! I just have to say that I have the best sisters a little brother could ask for. Being the youngest, I always had great role models and examples to live up to. Shelley, thanks for sharing your memories and feelings. I love you more than you know, and the feelings of admiration and respect are mutual!

Tom said...

Really Shelley? You post this wonderfully androginous picture of yourself on the internet that is just RIPE for abuse and then you couple it with a sweet story about trials and tribulations overcome by your brother? How am I supposed to react? On the one hand, I want to rip into that picture of you and on the other hand I want to say thanks for the wonderful story...the internal conflict here is quite distressing...thanks, now I have a nosebleed!