To My Brother, Chema

My husband’s brother, Miguel, has just published a book about Chema. Incredible! I have no words. Instead, I’ll leave you with a post that he wrote to introduce his book:

Everything that happened surrounding the death of my brother Chema was very fast: nobody imagined such an outcome and much less in such a short period of time. I felt a great sorrow at not being able to say goodbye to him. I wanted to tell him many things (to thank him for everything he did for the family, for our mother and siblings, and for giving us a great example to live by; and to ask for forgiveness for all the times I failed him…), but once again I arrived too late. I wrote this book almost as a way to find solace, but also because I know it can do a lot of good, because Chema’s life was exemplary from the time of his youth.

I must admit that I was very excited to start this book; to take out of the trunk so many memories and experiences that were almost forgotten, to see Chema again as a baby and in his childhood, so many moments lived together, his smile, his sense of humor, his almost permanent joy, his capacity to attend to the needs of the people that he approached or those that approached him… but above all, I became aware of what he suffered throughout much of his life, beginning in his youth. It has been like a light from heaven which helped me to see and understand his particular “via crucis,” or Way of the Cross. I thank God very much for all the time I had with my brother Chema; for his life; for his testimony and his example.

I want to be clear that this is not a biography. The book is based on a letter that I write to my brother and in order to understand better what I say in it, I include some short stories of Chema’s life and memories that we had together with our siblings, but I haven’t done any research nor any interviews—as would be required for a proper biography. I also dedicate one chapter to my mother because her figure is key in Chema’s life. The biography is being done by an author and is expected to be finished in the coming year. [If anyone would like to speak with the author of the biography, please write to me. Any memories you might have of Chema could be helpful.]

En la casa de Concha Espina
One of the photos that appears in the book. “Fun moment in the house of Concha Espina. 1986. “

Whenever I mentioned to a friend that I was writing a book about Chema, almost everyone asked me, “Will it be a sad book?”, and I responded the same way to each of them: it’s not a sad story, in fact it’s quite the contrary, it’s a story of love, because that was the key to Chema’s life: someone in love with God, his family, his friends, and many people he saw suffering. But as is true with all stories about love, in more than one occasion it might bring tears… but they will be sweet tears: when you discover the refinement of your soul, the purity of your heart, the acceptance of the will of God in your life.

On the back cover of the book, the Editor wrote: “Reading this book will make it inevitable that we rethink certain aspects of our lives.” I don’t know if it reaches that level, but it definitely is a book that is filled with hope, that encourages the reader to reflect and be optimistic about life, because God is always with us and He will never let us down.

 

I’ve attached a PDF with the first pages of the book, unfortunately only available in Spanish at the moment.

The book will arrive in bookstores in the next few days or weeks. Of course, you can also purchase it on the internet.

I hope you all enjoy it!

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