Dear Big Brother in Heaven…

Dear big brother in Heaven,

It’s been a year ago that I last saw you, and in a few weeks exactly 1 year ago that you left this earth and went to your eternity home in Heaven. I know you didn’t mean to cause me this pain and heartbreak, but at times it feels unbearable. Then I remember the pain I am feeling is just a glimpse of what you must have went through on a daily basis.

You were truly the best brother in the entire world. Even though we were 13 years apart in age, we were still so close. You loved me so much. I didn’t realize it before, but now I see how funny it was that when I was 8 years old and you’d play with me outside on the swing set.. you would have been 21 years old. What an amazing big brother you were to play with your little sister while you were in your 20’s….even with all the daily struggles you went through with schizophrenia. You were so strong.

I think back on those memories now and they make me sad and ache for those times back. But I am so grateful that I had you in my life for 22 years. That is what I have to remember- that God blessed me with you as my big brother for all those years. I also think that a lot of who I am is because of the impact you had on me. You taught me to always be kind, to be goofy. You taught me strength and to be yourself. And you taught me that you never know what someone else is going through- that is one of the biggest lessons you taught me. I also realize now how much we look alike. I saw it before, but now that you’re gone I see it even more and it makes me smile. There’s a funny face I’ll do that Trenton says looks like you. I don’t even notice doing it sometimes, but when I do it makes me grin  to know we were so similar in ways.

There is so much I wish I could say to you. I will never understand why this happened, and I have to come to terms with that- God only knows what you went through. Sometimes I am overwhelmed with panic that I’m going to forget things about you. Like your voice, your laugh, your hugs, your jokes, your facial features. I wish I could remember every single thing.

I miss the old memories we had and I miss the future I thought we were going to have together. I’m sad you won’t get to be the fun uncle to my kids someday I always thought you would be. I’m sad I won’t be able to visit you at your house and just sit and talk. We didn’t do much talking about serious things. I think it’s because you wanted to be remembered as the fun big brother and not put those worries on me. You didn’t want me to have to take care of you someday. Even though I’d give anything to, that’s not what you would have wanted. I also realized I only ever called you Bubby, Bubba, or Wiggie. I never called you by your name, Willie. And you mostly called me Sis, Ciara occasionally but mostly Sis. I think that also shows how close we were as siblings.

I miss you so much Bubby. I think of you every single day.