Today I met Scott's grandmother, Joan, his aunt Virginia and his beloved brother Dean. Scott and I want to write about the massive importance of his grandmother in his life but today I am writing about Dean.
You see, we all met by Dean's bedside in a local hospital here in the mountains. Dean was only three months old when he was diagnosed with diabetes and at four months he went into a coma which caused brain swelling and subsequent brain damage. At four years of age he suffered multiple epileptic fits. Many was the time when he was expected to die and yet he did not.
He charmed the nurses and me by telling us we are beautiful and that he loves us.
And yet , as his aunt pointed out , when he says the same thing to his grandmother and to Scott , the love is spilling out from every pore. He adores these two people.
Scott tends to Dean with great care and gentleness. He lovingly grows stern with him when Dean flicks him on the leg (an old game between the two brothers) once too many times. Dean sits with us in the visitors lounge and his laugh bubbles out of him like a pure spring. I am lucky to see him so animated, as yesterday he was apparently quite flat. He laughs at the camera and seems to enjoy having his photo taken.
His family are not sure how much more time they have with Dean. He is suffering renal failure and his time left here can be measured in weeks. The family are determined that these last days will be filled with grace and dignity.
"Scott," he murmurs after a while.
"Yes Mate" says Scott.
"I think I am getting a bit tired" Dean says.
And Scott gently takes him back to his bed.
I am privileged to be allowed to spend this time with his beloved Dean.