Always Brothers
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“Always Brothers,” Friend, March 2018

Always Brothers

The author lives in Iowa, USA.

“O death, where is thy sting?” (1 Corinthians 15:55).

Friend Magazine, 2018/03 Mar

Illustration by Jim Madsen

Luis bounced up and down in the back seat and sang a silly song. “Please settle down, Luis,” Dad said. “I need to focus on driving.”

“I can’t settle down,” Luis said. “It’s just so awesome!”

Dad smiled. “I’m glad you’re excited to meet your new baby brother.”

When they got to the hospital, Luis raced to Mom’s room. He knew where it was because Mom had been there for five days already. She had to stay at the hospital because Baby Ian was sick, and Mom was a little bit sick too. Luis had asked to see Ian at least a bajillion times, but Mom always said, “Not yet.” She said that the doctors would decide when Ian was strong enough for a visitor.

Today the doctor had called. Today was the day!

When Luis walked into Mom’s hospital room, she was already holding Ian. Luis ran over to see his new baby brother. Ian was tiny. He looked way smaller than Luis’s baby cousins. And there was something different about his nose and ears. He looked like a little elf!

“Hi, honey,” Mom said. “Come wash your hands, and then you can hold the baby.”

Luis washed his hands with special soap. He climbed onto the hospital bed next to Mom. She leaned over to hand him the baby. Dad helped Luis put his hands in just the right place.

Luis looked down at Ian. “Hi, Ian,” he said. “I’m your brother, Luis. You’re going to sleep in my room, and I can show you all my toys, and we can play at the park.”

Baby Ian looked right at Luis. Luis thought he was the best baby ever.

When Luis’s arms got tired, Dad took a turn holding Ian. Mom held one of Luis’s hands and looked into his eyes.

“Luis,” she said. “Do you remember in Primary when you learned about the plan of salvation?”

Luis nodded. That had been a good day. Sister Lopez had a moon and a star and a big planet earth on sticks. Luis got to hold the sun.

“Do you remember how we lived in heaven before we came to earth and how we are going back to heaven when we die?”

Luis nodded again.

“Baby Ian is still very sick. And the doctor says that he won’t live very long. He is going to die soon and go back to heaven.”

Luis looked at Mom. He looked at Baby Ian in Dad’s arms. Then he frowned. His throat felt tight. “But I love him. I want him to stay here and share my room and play with me. Doesn’t he want to stay too?”

Mom put her arms around Luis. “Of course he wants to be with us. We’re his family. But he will see us again.”

“He will?”

Mom nodded. “Dad and I were married in the temple. We were promised that our family could be together forever. You and Ian will always be our children.”

“That means that Baby Ian will always be your brother,” Dad explained. “And you’ll see him again in heaven.”

Luis was sad. He felt kind of mad too. But he thought about meeting Baby Ian in heaven and smiled just a little. He reached out and rubbed Baby Ian’s soft hair. “We’ll be brothers in heaven? That’s awesome.”

Mom kissed Luis’s cheek. “It is awesome.”