Today you would be turning 40. It’s so hard to comprehend what that means. I can’t figure out what is more difficult to believe. That you have been gone for a LONG twelve and a half years or that you have been gone for ONLY twelve and a half years. Both perspectives are real. Both are deeply painful. It’s hard to remember life before my three beautiful children and yet that is the life that you were a part of. You died two years before I became a mom. You never met our children…at least not on this physical plane. And divinely there is a healing beauty in that reality because I know without a doubt that you helped orchestrate our family. You helped guide us to our children at just the right time(s). And I see parts of you, your essence, in all of them. You would have been an amazing uncle. You would have been an amazing dad. I’m so sorry that you weren’t able to experience that in this lifetime.
And yet you did parent so many children. All of the students at North who knew they could trust you, depend on you, look up to you and be seen by you. You were a parent, an uncle, a teacher, a light. I wish you would have honored how bright your light was while you were here. I wish you would have seen it, felt it and embraced it.
I’m not sure you ever fully felt the impact you made because you were just being you. You were being real, you were raw, you didn’t have time for bullshit, you lived with a wide-open heart, which brought about so much pain AND joy. You didn’t work to gain recognition or praise. You weren’t trying to achieve anything or set yourself apart from anyone. You were being you.
You loved deeply and unapologetically. You were way too hard on yourself. You were a perfectionist to a fault. You never really settled into your skin but you were vulnerable and connected. You never fully embraced your awesomeness or your reason for being. BUT you left a huge, brilliant mark on so many. A legacy you weren’t worried about leaving.
And for that, for your brilliant light, for the incredible legacy you left, thank you. Thank you for being here. Thank you for being my little brother. Thank you for staying close all of these years. Thank you for your guidance. Thank you for your protection. Thank you for reminding us that nothing in life is guaranteed. Nothing is permanent, not even death. I know that to be true. I know the line separating us is not very thick. I wish everyday you were still in the physical world with us AND I know you are never very far.
I love you. I will miss you forever. Happy 40th Birthday!
Jason, Bryan and I will DEFINITELY take a shot of SoCo for you tonight, and I’m sure others will too. You are forever in our hearts…