28 years ago today you came into this world.
in march, it will be nine years ago that you left it. 
it's still so fresh in my mind that it seems like it could have been yesterday. oversleeping, thinking i was going to be late to school again and mom telling me that i probably wouldn't want to go to school. waiting. waiting to hear from your dad. waiting to hear if you were going to make it. waiting to hear if you would come back to us. waiting and waiting and waiting. i remember it feeling like days passed before we got word and at the same time, feeling like only an hour. hearing those words broke my heart. i can't even begin to describe the aching i felt in my heart; the longing for one more hug from your arms, the need to hear your voice one last time, for you to hear me say 'i love you'. those would never come.
today i celebrate your life. i celebrate your joy for everything dallas cowboys and deion sanders. i celebrate your love of tupac and mya. i celebrate your smile and the way you could always make me smile back. i celebrate your silly sayings: "after a while, crocodile"; "that's what i'm about, brussel sprout". i celebrate your strong will and your determination. i celebrate your overcoming of your struggles. i celebrate your southern accent. i celebrate your willingness to play dolls with your little sister, no matter how uncool that really was. i celebrate your ability to make up games on the fly. i celebrate your pride and how you couldn't let anyone know you were afraid of 'scream'. i celebrate your coloring capabilities. i celebrate your love of kool-aid. i celebrate your artistic eye and your paint splatter design on your bedroom walls. i celebrate your big brother presence and watching over me in middle school.
i celebrate you.
sometimes i wonder: what would you be doing if you were still here? would you be married and have children? would you be living in oregon, or florida? or maybe texas, or alabama? or somewhere really ritzy like new york? would you be an architect? a hard laborer? a sports coach? a restaurateur? would you be living in a big house or a small cottage? would you be enjoying life?
would you and justin get along? would you love landon? would we still be as close as we used to be? i tell myself yes, of course. i see so many similarities between you and justin, it's crazy. you both love with your entire hearts, you both laugh at silly, silly things, you both have a love for mexican food that i will never understand. you know what's even crazier? i have some pictures of landon where i swear, i swear, it looks just like you. how can this be?! there is no blood relation and yet, the resemblance is uncanny. it must be God's way of letting me know that you're still here; you're still with me and you're never, ever leaving.
i love you, brother. that will never change.
ps. you know what? we had taco salads for dinner tonight. it's funny, i seem to never eat a taco salad during the rest of the year; i save it for february 6. and i wouldn't have it any other way. c;


  1. what a lovely way to honor your brother's birthday. i'm sure your words made him smile :)


thanks for the input!