November 14, 2016

trying to process

*Photo from June 2014

Fear is the heart of love. I was with Justin's brother Kerry when I got this tattoo. He got the "Die Young" part of his "Live Fast, Die Young" piece on his arm. That's the only memory I really have of him and I spending actual time together, one-on-one. Last night, before I (finally) fell asleep, I cried because I finally felt like Kerry was my brother too. 

I'm grieving and I feel stuck in a weird space where I'm not quite sure how deep my grief really runs. The Kerry I knew for the last four years, since Justin and I got together, has been described by everyone that knew him as "not the real Kerry." But that version of him was the real Kerry to me and I'm not really sure how to process everything. 

Amidst the process of cleaning out Kerry's room, it still hits me once in a while that I'm never going to see him again. He's never going to be in the kitchen, cooking something on the stove when I get up to get milk for my cereal again. We're never going to carpool to work ever again. No more McDonald's trips for "Double Quarter Pounders with Cheese, only ketchup!" We turned around the door to his room. Expecting ghosts to come out of there doesn't do anyone any good. 

Almost every night, Justin's mom and I sit at the kitchen table and talk. Sometimes his sister Cora sits with us. It's become a comforting ritual, and reminds me of growing up and sitting at the kitchen table talking to my own mom. Tonight I colored in my new coloring book and drank tea. Tammy played her games on Facebook. We talk about work and Kerry and our dad's and being only children and just... life stuff. It's beyond comforting to feel a weight lifted off your shoulders after just talking to someone like that where there's no pressure to share anything you don't want to. 

I miss my almost-brother-in-law, who I'm sort of realizing was a lot like my dad so it makes me miss him too. They both liked Miller High Life. They were both very private people. They saved anything that they thought was important. They were both so very special people in my life and I miss them both very much. 

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