Little Brother

Good morning, Little Brother,

It’s hard to believe it’s been 10 years since I’ve seen you.  I still remember the last time we were together, hanging out on the porch with Dad.  It was late fall, and he was sweeping the leaves from the tile on the porch.  I had just told you that you were going to have a niece.

I still remember when I heard. Jedidiah’s reaching for the cell phone in the car roused me from my half sleep.  He looked so alarmed but gave no clue as to why.  I knew something was wrong–the way he urgently asked Bobby questions and slowly pulled the car over.  My first thought was something had happened to Dad.  You weren’t even on my radar.  You were a cat with nine lives.  You were always convinced you were invincible.  I guess somehow you had convinced me too.

It’s hard to lose a sibling–your only sibling.  Who knows you like that?  Who else knows and understands those childhood secrets and dreams?  The mischievous plans forged through walkie talkies and late nights?  The sneaking down the hall to see what grownup shows the parents watched? From the moment one of you is born, a relationship like no other is forged–especially if it’s just the two of you.  I felt like David losing Jonathan.  I still feel like that sometimes–whenever I hear “Somewhere Out There” or “Ice, Ice, Baby.”  You’re the only one who  could know or understand because you lived my childhood with me.

You never had the chance to meet your niece and nephew.  You would be so proud of Madeleine.  Her brilliance would blow you away, and you would tell her just how much she is like me.  And Max?  He reminds me every day of you.  You would have been the first person he would have called when he scored his first soccer goal this year.  I look at him, and I see you.  It helps.

So today, ten years later, I want you to know I miss you.  I miss you every day.  In honor, maybe I’ll give our old friend Coconut a call.  She probably misses you too.

**Please take a moment to remember those whose lives have been changed by suicide today.**


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