I was going to write this on the day of your would be twenty-first birthday, but something said I need to do it right now. I was beginning to think I could do a tribute to you on my radio show, but it would have been too much for your dear Blake, your older brother, so I decided against it. I canceled the show anyway because, well, if you found this letter in my blog, you’d freak out. Why? I have to sell a guitar. God, I wish you were alive to see this thing: a beautiful nylon acoustic Classical Yamaha thing with a nice black case and … yes, two golden picks. I’m selling it for $250, but alas, I’m a cursed woman, and can’t sell anything without people saying, “Cut the price.” I’m so mad because I need money and I want to barter my guitar for the bill money and money for a cab in Phoenix. I want to spend the day with Blake. I’m serious. His dad invites me down for Thanksgiving, and then I find myself without food, water, and money to obtain food and water for two of the days out of about seven. Chad, if you were here, I’d tell you this: I’d want to tell you how sorry I was for being as rude as I probably was.
Well, let me say it again: I am deeply sorry for the way I treated you, and I wish i could tell you earlier. As I write this, I cry thinking about what would have happened. I wanted to hear you play me something awesome, maybe you would have shown me what your skills were like on the guitar. Hey, I’d jam with you if I could. But here you are, somewhere where Blake and I can’t see you. Mom misses you a bunch, and she grieves you every day. Your mother screamed when she found you lying dead on the floor. Why did this happen to you? Please, I wish you were something more than just the guy I saw at Blake’s graduation.
I so wish that I had known you better through you, not Blake. I wish I could tell you that I played a bit on the guitar while in college, studied music, and so on. I had big dreams of being a choral director, but my independence took precedence over my dreams. Dreams like mine never seemed to come true. Not till there was Blake.
Blake was all the dreaming I wanted to do. If only you were alive and breathing to see the way I respect and like and think about Blake. I know we have our disagreements, but don’t all relationships have disagreements? Did you see my friend Carrie? She probably knows who you are by now. Carrie Loveridge was a sweet girl I knew back in the days. She went to a high school in Florida, and I never saw her after the age of eight, but I heard how she died. Sadly, her death was expected, and she died of cancer. Chad, I swear, you want Blake to get laid? Well, he doesn’t do that stuff. Please, hon, if you want to be Blake’s guardian angel, do not under any circumstances curse Blake with the regret of losing his virginity before marriage. I don’t want to hear Blake’s weird loss of virginity story over and over again. I won’t be the one to take it before he marries me, I swear.
And for one thing, I will always take care of him, love him, not at all lose sight of our goal. I want to be older than dirt when we are both dead, me and Blake. The last words I want to say are, “Blake, I love you.” Thinking about this may make anyone mad. But I want to carry something out that you didn’t get to. I promise if I have a gifted child, I will credit you with this. I swear on God’s right hand that you will be given some credit for the gifts my son/daughter may have. Blake will carry your line into eternity sometime, someday, somewhere far and away.
Chad, I wanted to be your sister, and I wanted to tell you I was sorry sometime, but why? I always ask why did this happen? Your mother’s grief is mine as much as hers, and I want to give Kathy a hug. If only I could give her a hug. If only if only the woodpecker sighs … sigh. I wouldn’t say it enough.
If I could do one thing for you when I see you in the sky, I would tell you, “You look lovely.” I would tell Blake his face was ruggedly handsome and even and pretty. I would tell you that you were playing beautifully on a golden harp, whatever God decides. Honestly, God has mercy on you, and he will bring you back to us sometime. When it is the end, the Lord will bring you back to us. When the Lord Christ comes back to this world, there won’t be the tears I cry daily for you. For your mother, I cry deeply and bitterly. I would never take advantage of Blake. Please, whisper sweet things to Kathy’s ear, tell her you are her son, always and forever. I weep for you and Blake, wishing you two had a better relationship. I honestly cry as I write this, the more I think about it I cry. Why did you have to leave us like this! Thank God you’re safe in the Blessed Mother’s palace, the Mother and Son in the Holy Family greet you warmly and will always watch your every step. You are the finest thing I’m sure Blake has ever known. I’ve never had a brother who went to Australia, never had a brother who played rock music. My brother, God please bless him, played trumpet. Ugh. My dad taught him. My brother was not learned like you were. For twenty years, you graced this earth with your presence, albeit good or bad things, you still had something there. I’m going to leave you with a couple stories I want to relay to you through this awesome blog I’ve kept. I know I’m altogether angry with myself for not saving you from that deathly wench who was your girlfriend, the deadly bomb that went off in your life altogether taking you with it. Let me tell you about my twenty-first birthday. I ordered wine with dinner, and I got a few presents. My parents and brothers and all went, and I was … yep, carded. I was asked to show an ID, and that’s when the waitress said, “Oh, it’s your twenty-first? Ok, we’ll do a Yee Hah for your birthday.” It was a roadhouse grill thing I went to, and it was fun. I hope I get to do this with Blake again. Here’s another thing I want to say: Luke Skywalker always had something good to say about his father, who by the current episode of Star Wars, is the late and evil Darth Vader. But Luke said, in all his honesty, “I feel the good in you.” He said even more, “I can’t kill my own father.” If you and Blake were in a situation like that, it would be I who would say, “Chad, do not try and mess things up for your brother.” Honestly, Kathy and I feel the good in you. I feel something about you that makes me ask myself, “Why would I ever say anything bad about someone as gifted as you were?” I am like Mr. Skywalker in Star Wars, I feel the good in you. Blake had his doubts, but he was like Princess Leia, the one who said in Episode 5, “Vader wants us all dead.” Well, Blake would have never said that you would want me or him dead, that’s not Blake. But I remember stories he told me, prayers he prayed, things that made him sad. Writing this has enabled me to feel a bit more at peace with myself and my grief. Honestly, I wanted to say I was sorry for whatever I might have said. I wanted to hug you, but I’ll have to wait till something weird happens: I get thrown out of the plane on the way to Phoenix, or some guy stabs me in the back, or I get shot in the face, or if I’m older than dirt and I’m lying in bed with Blake, slowly fading away. I don’t know what else to say. I wish you a very happy 21st birthday there with the angels and your friends who you have missed so dearly. Blake will be at the Spirit Room on Saturday to do something good for you. You would have loved it over there, and Blake says it’s awesome. I want to also say thank you for the life you tried to live, or have lived. I have a prayer I want to ask God to do in my favor:
Dear Lord, bless Blake, and the memory of his brother. Please, dear Lord, bless the mother of the one I love so dearly. Bless Kathy and protect her from feeling awful all the time, give her a better day every day, and when she feels bad, whisper sweet nothings to her like she never heard them before. Whisper sweet things to her like nothing ever happened. Call her name, she’s waiting for something. If that wench goes to the lake of fire, I mean your dear servant Chad’s ill fit girlfriend, I swear I want you to not let Kathy see her burn up like she probably is, according to your sacred word. Blake reads your sacred word. Let him continue to become more devout every day. Lord, I want you to lift Blake up on Saturday and Friday, let him see how much people care for him, let him be with me for all the days I’m down there, and … for my sake, bless his father with a deep understanding of who you are. G-man? Um, that’s a garbage man. But bless Blake’s dear old man with a yearning and a desire to understand Blake’s faith. I don’t want to see Blake upset because his dad doesn’t like his girlfriend. I hate to see Blake upset because of what happened to your servant Chad. Please bless his memory and all his friends who are still stuck here and not able to join him in prayer and song. Give Chad a sweeeter voice than any of the angels I’ve ever heard, and let him join in the chorus of cherubim and seraphim as they sing your praises forever. This may sound weird, but I’ve wanted this forever. I want to hold Blake in his times of grief, and this tragedy brought us even closer. Continue to bring us closer.
To Chad, I write this in your memory, to say I hope that when I see you in the heavens above, you and I will never have a disagreement or a rude word pass between us. I wanted to take care of some unfinished business. That’s what it’s called in ghost land, and I don’t want to be the living impaired person who has too much unfinished business to take care of. But I’m alive, and I still have unfinished business to take care of. Anyway, thank you for your life, albeit a short but the most productive life Blake and I have ever seen!
With love and hugs,
Beth, Blake, and Kathy, your dear brother, sister potential, and mother