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Thread: My lost brother

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    My lost brother

    I've been putting this off, since I know talking about this will result in tears that I haven't shed in a couple weeks. Wait...yep, I already feel them coming. I had asked Duke where would be an appropriate place for this, and a few days later this thread category popped up. So, here we go. This will be very, very long. I won't blame anyone who doesn't want to read it. It's important for me to get this out, though.

    A little over six years ago, a very special person entered my life. He had a blue mohawk, many tattoos, at least fourteen piercings in just his face and ears, and one of the most awesome personalities of anyone I've ever met. His name was Josh, he was a piercer at a local tattoo shop (he even gave me a few new piercings on my 18th birthday), and he was dating my older sister. It only took one night hanging out with them to know they were meant for each other, and it meant the world to me whenever I saw them together and how happy they made each other. They're both total goofballs, and I had a constant smile when they were around.

    Just over a year later, they were married. I was the maid of honor, and oh how I cried during the ceremony. It was beautiful. I've never seen my sister as happy as she was on that day, and Josh would forever simply be my brother.

    That was five years ago. In those years, they became the two people I looked up to more than anyone, and eventually the ONLY people I looked up to. We shared some of the same friends, and Josh was always quick to stand up for me if someone said something about me in my absence (nothing bad, usually saying I was hot or something, which caused Josh to respond with "Oh really?...That's my little sister...").

    A little over a year and a half ago, I started working at my current job. My sister is my manager, we run an adult store attached to a strip club. Josh was the assistant manager at the club at the time (he no longer had blue hair or a mohawk, and he took out all of his facial piercings). Not exactly my dream job, but I LOVED getting to see Amber and Josh all the time and work so close to them. I envied their relationship, I wanted to find someone who I could be as happy with as they were with each other. Josh continued to be protective over me, warning each new male employee next door that I'm his sister and that I'm to be watched over. When I was trying to get a divorce (my ex was rather psychotic at the time), he made sure to let all the security guards aware of my situation. He and Amber were my two favorite people in the entire world, aside from my son of course. Nobody else really even mattered much to me. I looked up to Josh so much that I even had a hard time sitting and talking with him about whatever. Sometimes after I got off work, I'd go next door and hang out with him for a little while. We'd get the dj to play something that we could both rock out to, since our taste in music was pretty much exactly the same with just a few differences.

    Last year, around this time I guess, things started getting a little hairy between Amber and Josh. They had moved into a bigger house with some other people, including one of the bartenders from the club who they were both good friends with. Josh and the bartender started becoming TOO close, and all hell broke loose. He quit his job at the club in December and moved to another city with the girl. My sister was devastated. Of course I supported her, and I knew Josh had done wrong. But at the same time, he was my brother and I'd never turn on him, and I wanted him to be happy. I'd just rather him be happy with Amber, obviously. I learned that things hadn't been as good between them as I thought, but I never let it affect how I thought about him.

    Amber moved on after a while, and though she was still hurting, she had comfort at least. Josh and the girl had their ups and downs, and broke up (I think) after a few more months. Something happened, anyway. He started making amends with old friends, apologizing for what he'd done. He missed Amber, but didn't ask for her back. He moved back in with his mother for a little while.

    On the morning of May 29th, 2010, I received a phone call from my stepmom. Josh's family had been trying to get in touch with Amber but her phone was on silent, so they started calling people in the phone book with our last name. I was told that Josh was dead, he had shot himself. I called my sister's boyfriend, told him what happened, and tried to prepare myself while he handed the phone to her. I wasn't able to tell her, I had to hand the phone to my mom. I went back to my room and started texting my boyfriend. I knew he'd understand my pain and confusion, as his own brother committed suicide four years ago. I was scheduled to work that day, and Amber that night, but I was able to get our third employee to work her shift.

    I kept thinking if he had just talked to me, I could have helped him.

    On the way to the funeral service, Guns N Roses' version of "Knockin on Heaven's Door" came on the radio and I nearly lost it. The the actual funeral service was no good. The pastor kept talking about Jesus, and rarely even mentioned Josh. Afterward was very difficult though. Josh's best friend (they were born on the same day, same year) laid his hands over Josh's gravesite. Josh's mom was wailing the whole time about her baby. We put single red roses over his grave. I worked my sister's shift that night, and my boyfriend sat with me at work until 2am. Whenever he'd see my eyes glazing over, he'd start talking to me about something to get my mind off of everything.

    I had a very difficult time dealing with what happened. I became very wrapped up in his death. Whenever my sister was around, I put on my strong face and supported her. But if I was alone, I'd cry until my eyes ran dry. This went on for months. I lost the person I looked up to. I lost one of the funniest, brightest people I knew. I lost my big brother.

    One day, I was sitting at work, and I felt a warm tingling sensation on both of my arms. It felt much like the static put off by older television sets. I had never felt it before, but I had a feeling it was Josh, but didn't get my hopes up. Later, I was looking through his tagged photos on Facebook and listening to a very sad song ("Our Farewell" by Within Temptation) and I was crying uncontrollably. I just happened to finish through the pictures right as the song ended. The next song to come on (it was on shuffle) was "Goodbye" by Mudvayne, which was one of both mine and Josh's favorite bands. I linked the lyrics if anyone wants to read. At this point, I further believed Josh was with me that day. I cried a lot more, but eventually calmed down. A bit later, another thing happened that leads me to firmly, without a doubt, believe Josh was visiting me. I wasn't on his pictures anymore, and didn't even have an easy way of getting back to them without going to his profile. My boyfriend sent me a link to a picture he had just uploaded, something he had made in photoshop. Then, without clicking ANYTHING (or even having anything to click), one of Josh's pictures popped out. I had no way of getting there, like I said. Some people may not believe in spirits or ghosts, but I have no doubt in my mind that my brother came to see me and check on me that day. It only halfway made things easier. I was comforted knowing he was still around, but saddened because I knew he wanted out of his place. I wanted him to be happy, to be at peace.

    I kept hoping for another visit, though I never got one that I could be sure about. That was okay though, I was happy at least having that one. Still, I kept feeling like he was around when I'd go next door for something. Expected to see him walking through the door that connects the store to the club.

    His birthday was last month, he would have turned 28. I got a new tattoo in memory of him. My boyfriend is a tattoo artist and he did it for me, and he knew how much it meant to me. Josh had the numbers 9-1 going down his right inner forearm (there was actually a fairly deep meaning behind it), so I got the numbers going in an infinity symbol, with a star above them (inspired by "Goodbye"). Tears rolled down my face while I was getting it done, and I cried so hard on my way home afterward. But since then, I've had an easier time dealing.

    My sister is doing okay. Her boyfriend treats her really well and has been supportive through everything. I like him, but there's always this thought in my head that says, "But...he's not Josh". I'm glad she's okay, I'm glad she has someone. But nobody will ever replace my brother. Not in my eyes. I know he wasn't perfect, he made mistakes and hurt people. But I'd give almost anything to have him back.

    The last I ever heard from him was in a Facebook message (two actually... I think he was drunk)

    Josh to me - May 17th, 4:34am
    "I have been wanting to make amends as I reallly have always loved yu and that should nnot change"

    And also, May 17th, 4:07am
    "I am trying to make amends for all the craziness. I have alwyas loved you and you know that is no different now"
    To which I replied
    "I still wuvs joo too. I'll always consider you my brother regardless of any situation between you and Amber."
    And he responded with

    I never heard from him again while he was alive.

    Thank you to those who took the time to read all of this. It's the first time I've gotten all of this out.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    At Home

    Re: My lost brother

    Hugging you Railyn. He sounds like a wonderful person. I am sorry he took his life.
    The brain is a wonderful organ; it starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get to the office. (Robert Frost)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Somewhere over the rainbow!

    Re: My lost brother

    A deeply touching Tribute to a Wonderful person, Railyn! Sending you love and hugs as well!
    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

    True love is wanting to give to another person without any thought about
    who’s getting the better of the deal.

    Love always creates, it never destroys. In this lie's man's only promise

    ~All quotes by Leo Buscaglia

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