For the most part I have my life pretty much under control, and when I don’t feel 100% like myself I am pretty good at faking it.
Jordan Dale, my younger brother, my best friend was killed (I cringe every time I say or type that) on Mother’s Day of 2007. That day was no doubt the worst day of my entire life. A day that I can remember like it was yesterday, but at the same time seems so faded out and blurry. Every day I wake up and my heart has a big chunk broken. There’s not a day I don’t think of or speak of Jordan numerous times. I tell my girls about their Uncle Jordan all the time, and I really do my best to make sure they know all about him. They remind me of him, it’s bitter sweet.
It’s been over 10 years so like with anything the time helps heal I guess? It’s true the heart – ache isn’t as fresh anymore. It’s just something i’ve learned to deal with. I wasn’t given a choice. I am alive, I wake up every morning with my heart beating ready to take on a new adventure. Jordan was always my biggest fan, and I know that some way, some how he still is.
Tomorrow January 22nd is his birthday. He would have been 29. It’s odd for me because I think of him still as a teen-ager. I try to imagine him and what he would be up to as a grown man who sometimes is fun, but honestly most of the time, it just rips at my heart strings because I don’t know, no one knows and no one will never know.
I try to remind myself “His birthday is just another day.” It is. Another day knowing he’s never coming back, but I feel it more intensely that day. The pain is just as deep as the day he died, except that for the entire day it feels like someone is cutting into my heart with an extremely sharp knife and it hurts in an unimaginable type of way.
Some years I have tried going to his cemetery and bringing him hot chocolate or munchkins (things he has always liked) on his birthday, normally the girls and I will make a birthday cake, some years if i’m not working we will celebrate and have his favorite chinese food lunch. All these things are special and all those things do make me feel a little closer to him.
My parents are divorced so that makes dealing with his death more of a struggle for me. I have felt in the middle of their divorce for a long time, and i used to have my brother, the only one person in the entire world who would understand exactly what and how I was feeling. It was just one more connection we had. He got it, he got me. Now, it’s just me and that’s a real lonely feeling.
My eating disorder got me through a big chunk of dealing with Jordan’s death. I focused so much on what I was going to eat or not eat or how many calories were in this and what exercise I was doing to afternoon to really be sad. My eating disorder was my safety crutch, I used it instead of feeling real feeling.
Looking back, it make sense. I used it a lot. It was my coping mechanism. I very dangerous coping mechanism that now I have spent years trying to erase from my brain.
Days like Jordan’s birthday, I’d really like to just ‘disseaper.” Hide in my room, cry all day, not function because that’s the way my heart feels. I can’t do that though, and I don’t have my eating disorder anymore to keep my mind busy. What do I have though?
I have my life. I have my real life. Tomorrow I am going to wake up. I’m going to thank my lucky stars for my beautiful life. I’m going to kiss my girls, hug my husband, and i’m going to smile. I am going to smile because I had the best brother in the entire world. I am going to laugh at all of the crazy moments and the funny jokes and I’m going to be thankful for the 18 wonderful years of happy times I had with Jordan. Those are my memories and those are mine forever. As long as I keep remembering them, they will always be with me. I’m going to thank my parents for giving me the best gift in the world, and I’m going to tell them how much I love them for being our parents. I know that Jordan and I came from love and that we were/are loved every single day.
My friends are always there on these tough days with sentimental messages, and stories to reminisce about. They never fail to put a smile or even a joyful tear on my day and I am always forever grateful for their never-ending support.
I’m going to get through the day, and when it’s over and I close my eyes for bed I’ll be one day stronger than I was the day before.
Cheers to you my little brother. I love you immensely. XOXO