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August and Namesakes

posted Aug 15, 2011, 8:00 PM by Larry Mathys
One could say that the month of August holds a particularly repetitive impact on my life.

  • The 19th started it all, beginning with my birth in 1971.
  • The 7th day gave me my baby girl in 1997.
  • The 21st day, my "mini-me" was born in 2002.
Now, August, you've let me down for the first time.  The 4th day of August, 2011, my Granddad - Houston Brazil - passed away.

If I believed in numerology or mysticism or any divination for that matter, it would seem that my life has a tendency to be affected by the month of August.  I mean, if you've listened to a lot of extremely religious people it doesn't take much to justify their faith.  But, given the fact that I don't believe in any such nonsense, it does help me in times such as this to remember how lucky we are.  All of us; the lucky few who have to endure watching our loved ones suffer through illness before finally resigning the entirety of their lives to a single, futile breath.  We couldn't endure death if we weren't lucky enough to have our parent's DNA recombine in a unique and particular way, to create us.

It is only in death of loved ones that we should find the value of our humanity, and how lucky we are to be alive right now.  We no longer need to point to the sky without knowing what it is we're pointing to, nor can we threaten others with mortal fear of eternal fire by pointing to the ground.  Nature seizes uniqueness, and it is that uniqueness - our larger than normal brains - that allows me to look down at my Granddad and know that even though his body ceased to exist, I am one of the lucky few that will always carry a portion of him with me (1/4 of him, to be exact.)

Goodbye, Pawpaw.  I will make sure that my dear boy understands that not every grandson, or great-grandson, has the privilege of carrying on a name.  We'll miss you...

With love from your Grandson and his family,

Larry Houston Mathys & wife Monica, daughter Rachel, and son Zachary Houston