Happy Birthday Brother #5

Brother # 5  is celebrating his birthday and for me this always takes on a special meaning.  Even though I love all of my brothers, this one here has over come some serious stuff.  See,when this one here was in his teens, he was in the game…hard and heavy.  I used to say that he had nine lives because, he was shot at on more than one occasion, one of those times New Orleans finest shot at him, and got him in the leg.  He paid in debt to society(we all know what THAT means.)  And at the ripe old age of…20(that’s old in gang-banging years) he had decided that, he didn’t want to go to jail anymore.

Now, anyone who knows anything about that sort of decision knows that…it’s easy to say, hard to do.  When you are 20 and all of your friends are still doing the things that kept putting you behind bars, when it’s hard to get a job because you have a record…it’s just not that easy.

But, he did it.

I know it must have been hard as hell, not hanging with his friends anymore.  A few of them of course, tried him and when they found out that, he wasn’t living that life anymore…they moved on.

But, he made new friends.

Friends who were not into the street life.

He had a family who loved him and never gave up on him…I’m sure that helped.

He knew he was never alone because, they would visit him in jail and even bring his son to see him.

My parents never condoned what he did but, they weren’t about to give up on their child either.

He learned a few skills in jail and when he was released, someone eventually took a chance on him and gave him a job.  He worked there(he was always talented with his hands) and never looked back.

He went to night school and got his GED.

He married and has a beautiful daughter that he dotes on, and a son that looks way too much like him..lol

He recently went to NURSING SCHOOL  AND IS PREPARING TO TAKE HIS BOARDS!  (sorry, I had to yell that out.)

It’s been 18 years and he has been a model citizen…I am glad that he was able to vote in the presidential election.  When I called him and asked if he was able to vote he said, he was the first person at the poll.  That’s my boy!

I am so proud of him that, I could never express just how much if I lived a thousand years.

See, I know all of my brothers extremely well.  So well that, I had my own personal nicknames for them when we were all growing up.

This brother here was my “sweet brother.”

When I wanted something to eat like pancakes but, didn’t feel like fixing them…he would make them for me.  He would do anything  for me and you wouldn’t hear a fuss out of him.

And he’s 9 years younger than me.

He’s still sweet to this very day.

His journey is a testimony to so many young brothers who think they can’t get out of that life.

He’s able to reach his son, our nephews, and other young black men because…he’s walked the walk.

So, Happy Birthday Brother #5….I am so proud to call you my brother but, more than that…

I’m blessed to have you as my friend.


6 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Brother #5

  1. I knew it!!! I knew you grew up surrounded by brothers JUST like I did (5 to be exact)!
    I think the things that your brother has gone thru has contributed to the person that he has become today and that’s what I value. For example: I didn’t learn to love God because of what the priests and nuns told me because most of them have always lived clean lives. I learned to live HIM after hearing testimonies from true sinners that HE yanked from clubs, streetcorners, and jail.
    Needless to say, I am so proud of your brother that I have tears in my eyes. With hope and faith, anything can change. Happy Birthday brother!!@

  2. Wow! That is a wonderful story. In this day and age when all you hear is bad news about us brothers, it great to know that some of us who have gone to jail, have made it out and done well.
    We don’t hear these stories often enough. These are the sort of stories that give brothers behind bars hope for their future. Too many are there because they lost hope and gave up.
    I applaud you for telling your brothers story.

  3. May your brother continue to influence other young men to take the “high road.” I also pray that your brother’s gifts and talents make room for opportunity to share more of his heart. Praying specifically that his sphere of influence increases!

  4. This is so beautiful. I think we live in a world that is so high on “tough love” that we forget the most important ingredient is LOVE. Yes, sometimes you do have to be tough, but as a family, it is so important to show support and compassion. I know I’m late on this, but I want to wish your brother, OUR positive brother, a Happy Belated Birthday.

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