I’m not sure if I’m ready to write this post or not, but I keep feeling like I need to do it, so here I am, I’m going to try and I guess we will see how it goes.
On December 30th, 2016, my 34th birthday, it went like most any other day. I woke up to the Facebook post from my brother Matt of a Youtube Video of NOFX’s “New Happy Birthday Song” which was our birthday tradition. I had sent him a different version of the same video the day before for his 34th birthday. We have been doing this for about 10 years now, at least. And before you ask, no we are not twins, though we might as well be. In fact we are about 14 hours apart (give or take) and have grown up like most twins would, with probably the same relationship as most twins have, however, I was adopted and we are not blood siblings, but you would never have known that. We loved each other and there has never been a me without him, or a him with out me. Well, until that day anyway.
Around 8 pm, or so, my parents called. I figured, as was normal every year they were calling to say Happy Birthday, but sparing you the horrid details, that is not what they were calling me about. No, it was that call that threw my whole world into chaos, more so then my mind has been doing to me for the majority of my life (thanks anxiety and depression for that by the way!). I freaked out and tried to figure out how I was getting home as soon as possible. My poor husband tried to console me while I was on and off the phone with my best friends who are in Boston. Between the group of us we got me on the first flight out so I could get home the next day (I live in SC and home is NH, for those that don’t already know).
So now that you know the background, at least as much as I’m willing to share anyway since somethings between families remain private, at least for me. You should know that my brother- all of my brother’s (I have 5) mean everything to me. We have varied relationships some closer than others, but it doesn’t matter, I love every single one of them with every fiber of my being. They are what makes me who I am, I grew up with a strong sense of how important they were in relation to who I was. I have always felt a major sense of responsibility when it came to my brothers, even if I couldn’t see them as often as I wanted, or if we didn’t have as close of a relationship as I hoped. They always were, and always will be the most important men in my life.
Matt was my constant. He was my first best friend (that I can remember) and we were damn near inseparable. We shared clothes, friends, good times, bad times- everything. When he died, suddenly, I broke, or shattered is more like it and I’m still struggling to find all the pieces and put myself back together. Like anything that shatters, no matter how much glue you use, you will never go back together the same. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I can never be the person I was before I lost him. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I can’t talk about him without crying, or that I feel a huge void in myself at least once a day, or that I’m unsure if I’ll ever not have the urge to call or text him when I see/hear/think of something he might like. What I haven’t come to terms with is that my brother is gone and that at the end of this year our birthdays will roll around and I won’t be able to share it with him, or that I won’t be able to hear his voice telling me “Happy Birthday Turd Burger” when he gets on the phone after my parents. While I’m so lucky to have had him as a brother for this many years and that I know I’m the only person in the world that was as lucky as I am to have him as my brother and I’m so lucky to have all my brothers I’m still broken. I don’t know if I’ll ever find all the pieces of myself and I hate it. I hate it because I know and I can see him shaking his head at me for still being so sad, for still missing him, because he wouldn’t want this for me, but feeling any other way feels like a betrayal to him.
This whole horrible experience has changed me, and not always for the worst. I’ve gained new family with his best friends, who I adored before, but I adore even more now- and their 3 boys. I’ve started to work on staying in touch more with those I care about, which has never been my strong suite before, but I’m trying. I’m trying to get through the day every day, and I have a huge support system, my parents, my brothers, my friends, they are all here for me. I’m trying, I really am, but the one person I want to talk to the most when I’m feeling so down, isn’t here any more and that makes it hard.
I can’t write any more about this. It is just too much, maybe in the future, but for now, this is it.