Hey Brother

I’m not sure what I believe when it comes to an afterlife. Where the spirit goes, if one even exists, but I completely understand the desire in hoping for something more than no longer having your family with you. I can’t say I ever understood the heart-wrenching hope that this isn’t the end, that you get to see those you love again. However, the last year has covered me in regret, guilt, hopes and wishes. Not sure if I want something more after life, but I do know I wonder a lot more than I ever have in the past.

To mark my brother’s passing, I take to his Facebook page sometimes and write him letters. Not sure why, if it’s for me or in the hopes that somehow he’ll hear it, but I am posting the latest one here. I posted the one I wrote shortly after he died with a music video at the time that for me really hit home and still brings me to tears. You’re welcome to read it if you haven’t already.

Letter to Lassen:

A year ago today, was like any other for me, and probably for our whole family. I don’t remember all that I did, but I know when everything turned around. I was in the middle of taking a nap before working the night shift. My younger brother was in Vietnam, on vacation. And some how you, the brother and son we all looked up to, ended your life.

I can’t presume to know what lead up to what happened, or how things may be different over the past year if you were still around. But I do know you were such an important person to me, to all of us, that a day doesn’t go by without you in our hearts and on our minds.

I missed you before everything ended, because I missed going camping with you, seeing you at Christmas, having you eat my pumpkin pies even when I forgot to add sugar. And now those opportunities will never come again. I miss talking to you about gift ideas for the parents, or hearing your exploits as a kid. I’m still not sure who had the most fun and crazy childhood, you or Bryce, and now it’s just too difficult to compare.

A year ago all the ifs, ands, buts, should have, would have, and could haves went through my mind. I was upset then at your sudden loss in my life, and I still am. Today, those same thoughts of what I could have done to be there for you skip across my mind, wishing I could change how it all is. Sometimes thinking it’s only a nightmare and never happened.

I love you, I always have, and just wanted to share some words to mark the time.

-Chandelle-

Some Replies to the Post:

Jennifer Hooper:  Never forget all of us riding our bikes on the street when we where little .

Chad Elms: Some of those same thoughts crossed my mind. Sorry for the loss of such a unique and talented father, son, brother, and friend.

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