Tonight makes it 5 weeks…it has been 5 weeks already. There are moments when it feels like I just saw Brandon yesterday, and there are moments when it feels like it has been years and I can barely remember him. I can go a whole day without crying, even carry on a normal conversation, and then as swiftly as a lightning bolt, I will get a flash of a memory, or of his smile, or of his voice, and I fall to my knees, sob, and physically ache from missing him. A few days ago, I was walking past the clothes hamper that I put most of his clothes in sometime during the second week, and where usually I can just look past it, ignore it, or pretend that everything is normal, that day I couldn’t stop looking at his jacket because I remembered the last time I saw him wear it, and suddenly, I could barely breathe. I slid to the floor, right there next to his clothes, and the pain I felt was so immense, so terrifying…it almost felt too raw to be real. It felt like if such a thing were actually possible, my heart was breaking, tearing, throbbing, bleeding, dying.
Dreams are starting to be cruel. That’s the only word I can think of to describe them – cruel. Last night, in my dream, I came home and found Brandon sleeping in our bed. He woke up, looked at me with that half asleep, sweet, smile, and said, “Hi, best friend. You woke me.” I remember feeling a surge of hope, of happiness, because I couldn’t believe my eyes, but he was really there, annoyed that I woke him. I started to cry and tell him that he was dead, that he still had that terrible bruise on his neck, and that I found him dead. He just looked at me, rubbed his bruised neck, and said, “No, you must have dreamed that. I’m fine, see? Come on, don’t cry…come here, baby.” He then patted the bed and pulled open the covers so I could crawl in. It was here that my alarm went off. I remember feeling such desperation, such a wild need to cling to that moment, cling to the moment of being with him again. When I woke up, alone, I looked at his empty side of the bed, and wished for death. How can life be so cruel? How much longer can I live like this, not really living, just existing, without him? The feeling of happiness and joy that washed over me in the moment when I saw and heard him in this dream felt so real, so damn real.
I don’t know how to do this…every day the pain gets worse. I keep realizing, every day, during certain moments, that this is real…he is really dead, and I’m left here alone, without my best friend in this world. I remember I actually told him once, that it didn’t matter if I had a million friends or none at all, because as long as I had him, I was complete. He was everything…. He understood me better than I understand myself. He was so kind, so smart, so full of life. And he’s gone. How can such a beautiful person just be gone? I wish it was me instead. He deserved to live, to finish school, to be a father, to drive his little Miata with a red trailer he was in the process of building for it. He’ll never get to finish that red trailer; his father is finishing it now.
I feel myself sinking, tumbling into a bottomless, dark, murky lake. I’m gliding further down, down where it is dark and cold, where sunlight doesn’t reach. Down here, there are ghosts, there are memories, there are shattered dreams, and echoes of the person I used to be. Down here, there are whispers in the silence, whispers of things past, of things that could have been, of things that will never be. Down here, there are only shadows.