Updated: Jul 6, 2020
Remember to live: if Rian has taught me one thing, it’s to remember to live. Life is short. Hard. Full of heartbreak. More often than not, the world is restin’ too heavy on our shoulders. I can tell you a dozen times I’ve considered endin’ mine.
When it comes down to it, you have to fall in love with that one thing, a hook, line, and sinker that makes it worth your while to stick around. Fake it till you make it. Hold on. Just, for the sake of Death himself, hold on.
I remember when you first saw my scars. You cried and got angry with me. You told me, “fuck you, you asshole,” which is funny because for you to cuss, it has to be an event. You swore left and right up and down for the next week. You wouldn’t talk to me. You had every right. You told me you hated me for inflictin’ pain on myself when you had to survive it growin’ up. I knew right then and there that you were and always will be the stronger man, brother.
I already tossed three drafts of this speech, so I’ll try to get it right this time.
When I found you, when I saw you starved and hangin’ on for dear life, somethin’ clicked. It wasn’t about me anymore. It was about you. It was about Vena. It was about Jay. It was about holdin’ us together. Remember movie and popcorn nights? Yeah me too. I remember how Jay 1-to-3 outvoted us to ban pizza from our movie nights. Yeah, that didn’t last long. The first night you begged for it, Venaand I gave in. Jay threw a fit, but you were happy. It was worth the smile on your face. It was worth Jay’s moody temper tantrum. It was worth seein’ Vena look at you like the whole world finally made sense.
I could relate to that look. Because it finally did.
Life finally made sense.
I can’t say life doesn’t still hurt, from time to time. Hell, it hurts like a motherfucker sometimes. But these are the things that make it worth it:
That time we all sang eighties songs a capella. You’d figured out my favorite song before I’d even known we had plans for the night out. It used to be Livin’ on a Prayer. Now it’s that song you’re writin’ on piano that you won’t tell us the title of.
How about that time you and Jay got into an argument over how hotdogs are technically sandwiches? It’s somethin’ between two breads. Obviously. It’s obviously a sandwich. Right? No? (Vena called a tie deadlock on that one. Both cases stood.)
And that time you saved a sparrow that’d fallen out of a tree. You nursed it until it could fly back to its nest. That bird cowered away from me like I was the bogeyman. But it saw the life in you. It was drawn to the life in you.
Life became more about findin’ the next best karaoke spot, or runnin’ from the cops at four A.M. or vegan-cafe-hoppin’ until we found garlic bread you approved of. After that day—by the way—I don’t think I could ever eat another single piece of garlic bread without havin’ severe flashbacks.
Point is: Life is the small things.
Life is high and low and a lot of pain, but it’s more like the night if you ask me. If it’s a cloudy night, it sucks. If it’s a clear night, though—well, if the gnats don’t get you—you get to stare up into the black and see the diamonds in the rough. That’s Vena. That’s Jay. It’s you, your sister.
But who of all of us can say the night sky isn’t beautiful?
In all that darkness, you are one part of the constellations that make the night worth it.
Remember to live