Joy and pain, This is what I told my brother he was to me and he was. I even encouraged him to get it as his license plate, he never did.
Released in 1980, Joy and Pain was a song by Maze featuring Frankie Beverly. The cover depicts blue clouds and a waterfall while the other side is red heat rising and the water flowing is live red lava. Heaven and hell, God and devil, good and bad. It has an upbeat tempo that makes your nod when you hear the introduction and then Frankie's voice wales through... a long vibration of "hey and ohhhh" and life's lessons start to flow.
It was in 1980 when my brother began to be my joy and pain. I take it back, he's been that to me all my life. We always clashed. We never sat next to each other, we never had anything nice to say. It was not until years later that I found out why.
The song speaks of aspects that we have all experienced, or will. It's a song that causes you to say "yeah." "Remember when you first found love how it felt so good, thought it would last forever more, so you thought it would," and isn't that the case for most of us? Of course he's singing about a love we have in a relationship but I thought he would be with me forever or until we least grew old, older then what I am now.
".. suddenly the things you seen got you hurt so bad, so bad" now that's bad when you have to add an extra one." With him I experienced courtrooms, county jails, prison, allegations, addiction, money, his appearance, and his health. Several times we were told by doctor's to tell him goodbye because he wouldn't make it, now that's some real stuff. Tell him goodbye, even now it saddens me remembering standing next to his hospital bed to say what you can't say out loud, what he can't hear. Not to be able to say what you really want to scream. Fortunately, a reprieve was granted when he pulled through and to tell him hear him what I was thinking at the time and to hear him say "damn Tee."
Then zap...he was good, to be exact he was shining. I didn't say it, others did. He would come out of the hospital or out of jail or out of his addiction and he would shine. I marveled at his resilience. He was said to be invincible and this may have been the problem, maybe he thought he was. The song goes on to say "how come the things that make us happy make us sad."
"Joy and pain are like sunshine and rain." As in any relation "love can be bitter, love can be sweet" and from our childhood riffs, it was. When he was doing good, I didn't have to worry or defend him, ".the ones that you care for give us so much pain...it's alright, their both one and the same." It is, and that was him, that was my brother. Things that we characteristically wouldn't put up with another, for a sibling you do. Sure I would get mad and tell him so, sure we would fall out and he would stay away, but eventually we always made up. He always said he was sorry, he always said he missed me.
"We go through life, going up and down." This indeed we do, we take what life throws at us and keep it moving, this does not mean that we don't hurt in the process, we walk with it until he the road yields and it goes left.
"The things that turn you on, turn you around." I say it for him and myself as well. I say it for anyone when you get the wow factor. The factor that says it's alright, I'm not hurting anybody. The factor that says it's my life. The factor that says it's my prerogative, and you can't understand any one's concern. The fact is that thing changed you. The fact is one can see where it's detrimental to your being and you can't. The fact is I'm losing you, your losing yourself. From experience, what they can't see is not knowing how to fix it.
"When the world turns your around, love is somewhere around.," and it's only by this vessel that changes can be made. Love brings it back, not judgement, disdain or anger. It's the love that says I messed up, but you love me. It's finding the love you have for yourself that was trashed with a reprobate behavior. Already so many misgivings from the errors, already the hurt and shame, all is needed is love to make you shine. No one needs another enemy, especially when you've become your worse.
He was my sunshine and he was my rain. I found Vincent dead Christmas 2009.
God had told me he would die, he also said we all have to die (an aha moment), but it wouldn't be from addiction, and it wasn't. It saddens me that he was alone, I guess it was the way it had to be. Another hospital stay would have heeded in history repeating itself in the doctors saying tell him goodbye. God loving us the way he does, would have honored our request, this time He did it His way so He could have his son back Now this outlook I give credit to my sister. She had to tell me this which helped get me over a portion of my grief.
That's what makes it grow it has to have both.
At a funeral there's lots of carnations. At his there was only roses. Lots and lots of roses. I found it overwhelming, and it still is to me. The same one that I loved the most, the same one that was my joy and pain, was just that to to others as well. You don't give roses unless he was your best...joy and pain.