There are so many things I have wanted to say to you in the last five years, so I guess I’ll begin with thank you:
Thank you for protecting me as a child. Even though you took some liberties as an older brother, (taking advantage of how cool I thought you were) you were my constant protector in every single way, and still remain so today. You protected me from the horrible truth of our family’s crumbling foundation, the abuse (both emotional and physical), the horrible lies, and the substances that controlled our family and childhood. You always defended me from Meghan, while still trying to help her. We didn’t know how deep seeded her problems went, but she had the tendency to take them out on me, and you were always there in between us. Though mom always had a part in caring for me just as much as you, when she was suffering from the abuse of our father, you were there to take care of me. I was so naive, and once I went into my adolescence, instead of trying to help you, I became angry at you, and forgot all the help you gave me when you needed it most. So moving on to part two, I’m sorry:
I’m sorry that I was so angry at you. You were not yourself when you started to drink. I knew so little about Alcoholics even though they ruled our family, and eventually crushed it. Being distant and ignoring you in a passive aggressive manner was not the action you needed. I know that there was nothing I could have done that would have changed your actions, but I still wish you knew how much I really did care the whole time. But you did make me unbelievably angry, and thinking about some of the things you did still makes me angry. Maybe it’s because you can’t even remember them. Do you remember when I was thirteen, you made me hold the ounce of marijuana just in case the cops came? Do you remember when I was sixteen and you were yelling “Why don’t you love me anymore?” in front of my friends? Do you remember texting me from the hospital that I was a “terrible fucking sister” ? Fortunately for you, you don’t remember, but that’s something that I can’t forget. Or maybe it’s something I won’t forget, which I am also sorry about. There are somethings I choose not to let go, because I am in constant fear for if you relapse, even though I shouldn’t be, which brings me to the third part, how proud of you I am:
With a little help from family and friends, you turned your life around, three jail encounters, one DUI, several broken bones, and one seizure later. Your drunken endeavors were endless, you fell, you fought, you fought police officers, you drove drunk, you were kicked out of college, you served a month in jail, you seized from alcohol withdraw in jail, you lost your front tooth, you pushed someone through a plate-glass window, you cheated on your girlfriend, you saw a therapist, you split your forehead open, you tried to staple your forehead back shut with an industrial stapler, your therapist told you she wouldn’t see you unless you got help, and then you said you’d go to rehab, but you were going to go to Mexico first. You were on the brink of a non-functioning alcoholic, and I don’t know what made you go so easily, but on the day of your flight to Mexico, our ten year divorced parents reunited to travel across the country to show up on your doorstep.
You withdrew from school, You left your apartment, and you retreated into the wild for wilderness detox and rehabilitation. I only heard from you once, it a letter expressing how deeply sorry you were for everything, I had never heard such sincerity from you before. Your wilderness therapist emailed me explaining I had to write a letter to you. Our mother who does seem to have some boundary issues told me that your therapist said mine was going to be the most important. Reluctant and nervous at first, I ended up cranking out 5 pages.
You entered as a sick little boy, and came out three months later a strong man. You had left in March, released in late June. You went straight to another program until October teaching you how to live in the world again, sober.
I remember the first time I saw you, In august. You looked so much bigger, stronger. You had very long hair and a wild beard. Your front tooth fell out. You looked happy, you looked beautiful.
Last part: I love you so much. You’re an incredibly strong and wonderful person. I’m sorry if I still get angry with you sometimes, it’s my fault, not yours.
You’re my Best Friend.