Tyler,

How do I start this?  I’m in a bit of a rough patch here and I would give pretty much anything to be able to sit down and talk to you about it.  It’s been a really long time, hasn’t it?  The last time I saw you, you were sitting on a stump in the front yard, scraping paint off your tools; you’d decided to mark them all so they wouldn’t get mixed up with Dad’s tools, then hadn’t liked how they’d looked painted so you were scraping them all off.  I laughed, cuz it seemed like such a pointles exercise…but that was you, always altering your purchases to make them yours.  We chatted a bit about your last date and you thinking “can I just get my money back?” and our plans to go to MEC on Tuesday night to buy supplies for our trip to Europe.  I was so excited to go with you Ty…I knew we would have fun and you would make sure everything was safe and comfortable, like you always did.  Do you remember when we were little and we found a handful of vinegar packets on the sidewalk when we lived in Vancouver, and took them behind the house and drank them all?  We knew Mom would be mad if she knew so we hid.  Do you remember Ryan on the corner who always wanted to wrestle, so we’d tag-team him and he’d always end up running home crying?  And when we got older, having everyone in stitches whenever we’d be in the same room together just by our banter?  Do you remember, Tyler?  Because I’m starting to forget.  It’s been just over four years since I last saw you, and I forget what it feels like to laugh that hard.  I am forgeting the stories of living in the little house on Horley St. because there’s no one here to ask if they really happened.  I forget how to feel light and carefree and happy…and I’m forgetting that I ever did.  I’m forgetting the sound of your voice, and for some reason this feels like the worst betrayal of all.    And this would be different, Tyler, if I didn’t know the difference.  If I had grown up with Nate, Layne, Mom, Dad and not you, maybe the way I am now would be normal and I would feel fine.  But I didn’t, there was another brother here who helped me to understand the way our family worked.  He didn’t think I was special or different or removed.  He grew up right alongside me and he understood why I turned out the way I did.  That brother was you Ty, and I need you to come back.  I need you to tell me what to do, because I don’t know.  Come back and tell me why Nate and Layne don’t talk out all their problems like you and I used to, how to be there for Nate now that he’s going to be a husband and father, how to help Layne adjust to being back home, how to be there for your friends, how to not fill all of my time with work and not feel guilty, tell me what I’m supposed to do next with my life…because I don’t know.

You died on a sunny April day, and I woke up that morning with one thought:  today is the day my life is about to change for the better!  It started as a day of infinite possibility, of hope.  That’s not the way it ended.  Kevin called me at work to tell me you were gone, and when I heard the words, I stopped being able to breathe.  “Brianna, you have to come home.  Your brother has been killed.”  It’s been a long four years without you Tyler…and sometimes, I still can’t breathe.  I feel like I shouldn’t mis you anymore, but I can’t stop.  Tell me how to stop, Ty.  Because so much has happened other than you dying that I need you for…did you know Kevin and I split up?  Did you know I had a few businesses and a whole bunch of successes and failures within them and could barely eat or sleep for almost a year?  I have lost faith in love, and am not sure I ever really felt it at all.  I don’t talk about you very much, even though I talk about everything else.  What am I supposed to say?  You were the man I looked up to, the man who made me think there are good men out there.  But I’ve looked, Tyler, and there just isn’t one for me!  I am so tired, I want to stop trying to make a difference, stop trying to find that perfect love.  I want to tell you all of this and hear your reasons for why I shouldn’t give up.  I want to hear you and believe what I know you’d tell me.  I have hurt every single day for the last four years…I just want to tell you.  But I can’t breathe.

-Your older Sister

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5 Comments

  1. Nicole

    Tyler’s life was such a gift to so many people even those, like me, who never had the chance to meet him. The gift Tyler gave me was you, unfortunatly it was in Tyler’s death that you and I grew closer and it breaks my heart that our friendship couldn’t have grown from something different. I wish I had some beautifully poetic words to say about your healing process and how God has still got you very close to His heart even if your not aware of it but I don’t. So I’ll leave you with the knowledge that you are a treasure and gem that God has enriched my life with. *HUGS*

  2. Luiza

    I’ve been thinking of starting a blog for a while and I just didn’t know if I’d have the courage to really be authentic and real. Thank you for sharing your true thoughts. It’s very inspiring.
    Love ya lots! xoxoxo

  3. Jenny

    Oh Brianna,

    Thanks for sharing your heart here. It breaks my heart and fills it at the same time to know you had such an awesome relationship with your brother, and it makes me wish I would have known him too. And these 4 years later I still wonder if there’s something I could say to make it all better.

  4. I appreciate your comments about your brother, Brianna, I to lost a brother…
    I miss him so much.
    I sometimes speak to him in my dreams, so real. I’m not an air fairy type person, but I do treasure my memories and my dreams of “Jimmie” .
    I miss him so much.
    I truly feel your loss and that lil buddy is one of the things makes you so special to me.
    Craig

  5. briannacarson

    Thank you to all of you who’ve replied to this…it’s my most personal post so far, and I really appreciate the feedback and empathy. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with loss…in our lifetime, we all will. I’m blessed to be surrounded by friends who care enough to respond and share their own stories. Thank you all so, so much 🙂

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