Grieving Through Writing: A Letter to My Little Sister - We Miss You, And I WILL Find the Truth.
Please keep in mind that I'm writing this "to" my sister - writing has been my only healthy outlet for venting even an ounce of anger, sadness, rage, confusion, and just general mania.
I am so glad that I am able to write and just spill the thoughts in my head onto paper...
"Hey Sissy - lately, I feel like my 'not-so-little' posts here (FB) are a way to share some of my more "PG-13" thoughts about everything and let you know what's new... (but don't worry, the unrated version definitely spills out into my journals..).
I have to say, the past few nights have been really. REALLY rough for me. Everyone is hurting right now - but I'm just now feeling this wave of...I can't even explain it. It jumps from just feeling like someone took a shotgun and pressed it against my heart and blasted a hole point blank, to just bursting into tears in private, to even questioning if maybe the reason you didn't tell anyone how you felt inside, was because of me - and I'll explain why I feel like this is where my head is at currently.
I was a VERY shitty brother, son, friend, etc, for a number of years - I think pretty much everyone in our little town knew this - the polydrug addictions, relapses, the lies, my disappearance for months... the pain I caused the family and my close friends over the years between it all. It breaks my heart to even think about it.
The past 2 years, I felt like things were beginning to start heading in the right direction between us - I was eager to rebuild my relationship with you. Having you physically present (when I was around) my entire life, and then suddenly one day I'm alone...I've never considered how fucked up that would be. I was really trying my best to check in on you, to reach out, to just let you know that hey, I'm doing good, but I hope you're doing good, too - and if you needed anything, ANYTHING, I would've been there for you... but when I left home after this last trip earlier this year, the conversations quickly ceased.
I felt like I did something to let you down yet again - and it bugged me so much. I would constantly text mom and ask if you were okay, if you were just not having a good day, or if something bigger was happening...I didn't expect you to reply right away, because that's just not how our relationship has ever really been, and I completely understand that.
...But I have to say, even though I was physically not that close to home, I was truly trying my best to make up for all the hurt, pain, anger, sadness, disappointment - all of it. Maybe you still needed more time - and if you did, I would've understood that, too. I'm just sad you didn't get to read my last text message - I sent a picture of those stupid little lychee coconut jello shot candies we always used to get as kids when we'd fly out to visit family out West, and I was so excited to bring some home for Thanksgiving - I found a giant container for $6 at the local Asian supermarket near my apartment and I was so so happy!
I was eagerly awaiting flying home for our traditional Thanksgiving pigout feast, our lame (but also still adorable) tradition of taking bathroom selfies with the kiddo cousins, like we started doing years ago... and finally, for that moment when we could just sit down together, throw some South Park on, shoot the shit, and make each other laugh with some dark humor, while just annihilating the whole damn bucket of candy in one sitting... but now, I may not eat them at all, and instead, keep them as a silly little reminder of the younger, simpler times in our lives.
Staying clean is even harder with you gone now - but I promise you, I won't relapse.
I feel like maybe our extremely rocky relationship made you feel like you didn't want to hurt/worry/place any sort of fear or burden on those you loved, because they'd already been hurt by me. If that's the case, I want you to know just how sorry I am, and I would do anything to turn back the hands of time and have gone right when I veered left in life. It's literally been stuck on my mind for a day and a half now.
I know I can't take any of it back. I know what's done, is done. I just am sad that I wasn't there for you like a big brother should be - one you could look up to, one that you could talk to about any assholes giving you trouble so I could pay them a visit, one where we could talk cars and annoy the shit out of the entire 3-block radius with your ratchet-ass loud Evo scraping every fucking bump in the road, and completing the day with a speeding ticket in 1 hand, and shopping bags from Target in the other.
I won't get that chance; I had it before, but chose to be selfish and cared little about the future - because I never thought that anything bad would ever happen to anyone. I figured it'd have been me, and I accepted that, because I knew I was doing it to myself.
But I want to let you know something - as thick-headed and stubborn as we BOTH could be, your Wake and Funeral had such a profound impact on me - so much so, that I've decided to start dedicating my life, energy, and resources, to making a positve impact in the world - like you did on a daily basis. You always put a smile on someone's face; you always remembered birthdays. Anniversaries. For everyone.
You crafted little handmade items that were absolutely BEAUTIFUL, and hundreds, if not thousands of people in our area, have your work in their homes. You touched so many lives.
You've truly inspired me to take up a cause, to be a part of something bigger than myself, to seek to help others, to make the world, even if only a tiny bit, a better place, every single day.
We had our first meeting a few nights ago for your foundation - we have some great ideas in the works already (more details to come in another post, directly from the new foundation page @sunflowers4hope). If we can prevent even a single loss of life due to the work we do in honor of your beautiful life, then it will not be in vain. We all truly believe that more awareness and conversation needs to be started around mental health and suicide - it's quickly turning into an epidemic (and social media is actually playing a really large part in it, especially in younger age demographics). The work we do here in your honor, will not only help save lives, but also help inspire, and even help train more people on how to identify and properly react to people that are stating suicidal intentions, showing signs of distress, etc.
We are highly considering creating a yearly scholarship fund, to help fund someone's education if they choose to go into the medical field, specifically with a focus in anything mental health related. We need more trained, compassionate professionals to help us combat this crisis.
Your legacy will live on forever, sissy, I promise you that.
On another note....
When night falls, the house becomes silent; it feels as if the world is, for the moment, at peace; and yet, my world darkens.
I've spent nearly every ounce of my time digging for answers and wracking my brain to find every single fact surrounding your death - and, as I promised you with a whisper while carrying your casket to your final resting place, I will never stop hunting for the truth - no matter the cost.
I still honestly haven't fully accepted that you're gone and won't be (physically) here - it just doesn't seem real, which makes absolutely no sense since I literally carried your casket to your grave...it seems grief tends to do weird things to our minds and sometimes, we try to rationalize the irrational.
Your friends, as well as mine, have been so loving and supportive - and honestly, without them, I don't think I'd be doing too great right now - not that I truly am, but I'm able to maintain my composure (for now) so that I can focus on bringing the truth to light. None of us feel we have ANY modicum of closure right now - the police have totally fucked everything from the start, and are actively supressing your case saying it's open and shut, his alibi checks out, it's a straight suicide...
But, don't worry; I'm going to pull on those chains with every ounce of strength I have. I'm going to make as much noise as possible. I'm going to make sure that WE ARE HEARD, and that this isn't just swept under the rug like they wish it to be. Local PD has been kind and trying to help; it's the next level up on the food chain that couldn't give a flying fuck and is practically giving us all the middle finger.
They're worried about chain of command coming into play - well, I'll fucking make sure it comes. I will knock on every door, call every number, talk to every single person in power, and let every single one of them know that they fucked up - if we, as citizens, are to be held accountable for our actions, then there is absolutely 0 reason why those that uphold and enforce accountability are themselves held to the same fucking standards. I will NOT tolerate a double standard here, and anyone with any sort of self respect and respect for the Constitution and our countries laws shoudn't, either.
Also, I wanted to let you know that I'm taking real good care of your boy, Axel.
Thanks for raising a 110lb maniac alarm clock that threatens assault and battery if I don't wake up within 3.1 seconds of him jumping on the bed. I'm almost positive you told him to smack the shit out of my eyeballs at least 3 times now, to gnaw on every single item of clothing I own (I can't work fast enough to keep replacing clothes, dammit!), and to just literally lay on top of me and be his "whiney boy" self in the mornings - I'd expect nothing less from you than to continue trolling me, even after you've left this earthly realm. 👻
Give Grandpa a huge hug for me, and take care of him, please.
We are all doing our best to be kind to one another and do better down here; not only for ourselves & each other, but for you - because you've truly inspired us to be better humans. (Well, I think I'm changing for the better, but others would probably still say I'm a sarcastic asshole - just like you cough cough).
Your passing has shaken me to the core; I am NOT the same person I was 3 weeks ago. That single phone call from Dad changed my life forever - and it will forever haunt me. But, it also reminded me that life is fragile; that doors don't remain open forever, and sometimes, once they're closed, they're sealed shut forever.
Love ya kiddo - I'll be waiting for your next troll attempt!
P.S. Axe has eaten 2 of your (assuming top 3 favorite) blankets now, and I'm (secretly & eagerly) looking forward to number 3. He hoards them in his bed usually, and then sneaks onto my bed and gnaws the living hell out of them while I work - I even encourage him to go nuts and have a blast, and he most certainly does! What should I give him next?! 😂"
*The foundation we are creating is meeting every few weeks, and we will soon have an official name, so until then, I will refrain from posting anything under the other account I created until it's 100% confirmed that everyone agrees on that name.
I will drop another post in a few days with an update about our meeting and some of the ideas we had, etc - I'd love to hear feedback from the community on whether or not you guys think these ideas might be effective ways to achieve our mission - identifying those in crisis/potential crisis, those in risky situations (like abusive relationships), and also to prevent suicides from happening, especially when there are cries for help/signs that something is coming.*
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