Tomorrow is the memorial service for my oldest nephew. I have not talked about his death on my blog. It is painful for me but more painful for my brother and sister-in-law.
He was such a sweetie pie when he and his brother first became a part of our family. They were foster children. They were Kiowa Indians. My brother and sil had been told that because the boys were from such a dark tribe, few Native Americans would adopt them. They truly believed the boys would be with them for life.
At the end of the first year the DHS took the older boy (age 6) and placed him with a Native American family where he could be with another brother. That was difficult for my brother and sil. They knew then that they could never let five-year-old Martin be taken from them and they began the court process to legally adopt.
Martin was a scoundrel. He would do anything and charm his way out of it. I especially loved him and eagerly helped him out of every problem that I could. But Martin's problems grew beyond clever pranks and running away from home.
He married, had three beautiful children and two grandchildren. But his marriage of 30 years could not survive Martin's drug and alcohol addiction.
We all exhausted ourselves attempting to rescue Martin. His two sisters did all they could but he used them as well. Martin had found a few of his living Kiowa siblings and even they attempted to reach out to Martin. Finally we all had to let go and let God.
He surprised us by finally, at age 54, admitting he had a drug problem. He checked himself into a rehab facility, went through detox, had an enjoyable evening at the facility drug free. His parents had both been able to tell him they were proud of him for the first time in years. That night Martin went to bed and died in his sleep.
This morning I awakened wondering how can I get through this service? My own children suffer for this oldest cousin whom they loved. He was a rescuer to both of them at different times.
I feel badly for turning my back on my nephew. He called to me on several occasions but obtaining money was his ultimate goal. His parents had to cut him off but my brother was the least successful. He could not let go of his son. I feel guilty for my pain while Martin's parents are feeling their sorrow so very deeply.
My most visual memory of my nephew Martin was picking him up at his elementary school. He was on the football team and had been at practice. The rest of the team was still on the field but Martin was in front of the school leaning on a pole in his uniform with a group of girls gathered around him listening to his stories.
I pray dear Martin that you have found the peace of God that passes all understanding. I will always love you.
|Martin was an amazing artist in every medium.|