It’s been almost a decade since you left us. On Wednesday, another year will have flown by and tallied those days of missing you all the way up to 3,240 (9 years). I still can’t believe it to be honest. At this point I don’t think of you every single day anymore. No, now it comes in waves. Big, bold, crashing waves. They are rough and usually come when life is already storming. That constant heartache has mellowed to a reminder instead – to a feeling that comes with hearing a song you’d like, seeing a photo memory on Facebook or meeting someone that appears like you. The reason the constant ache has stopped is because life continued without you here. It continues to spin madly on with more challenges, memories and changes. It feels cold to say – but there just isn’t time to ache for you all day anymore. But the beautiful thing about that is, you wouldn’t have wanted us to.
To this day, I wonder who you might have been. What clothes you’d wear, music you’d like, hobbies you’d have. Would you have travelled, worked your face off or raised a family? I find these are the things I think about in those crashing wave moments. These are the things that bother me most. If you hadn’t been taken that night, who would you have been? I look around at all my other siblings and watch as they write their life novels. Complicated, messy, beautiful novels. And we’re writing in bold because you being gone has taught us that’s the only way to live. In a split second your entire world could change.
After 9 years I am more confused than ever with your passing. It seems as I get older there are less and less answers. I always thought “adults” had everything figured out. That they could explain these things. But alas, I was wrong.
As I sit staring out at the rain, I wonder where you are. Completely gone, floating in space, sitting on a cloud or in those heavy raindrops? I wonder if you’re in the trees that surround me as I hike. I wonder if you’re in a beam of sunlight or a twinkling star in the dark, night sky. Are you looking after me? After our niece you’ve never met? And the new one being born this winter? Oh how they would have loved playing with you…
9 years later and I can still recall funny things you’ve said, faces you’ve made and the times you teased me. I can recall car rides with you, seeing you in the hallways at school and of course the day you left us. Those memories I will never forget. When those waves come, I am never ready for them – but they bring your spirit back. And if that is all that’s left then that’ll just have to be good enough.
Miss you, Brother.