...today my brother Tyler passed away after complications from his fifth open heart surgery. It was unexpected. During surgery there was so much scar tissue, his heart ripped causing air to travel to the brain, resulting in global brain damage. The surgery didn't work. My brother was brain dead. His organs were shutting down. It was only a matter of time. I was going to school in England at the time. My mom called a week after his surgery, once it was obvious he wasn't going to make it, asking me to come home. 24 hours of straight traveling, I got to the hospital and was there for the next 36 hours. He was gone. His eyes were blank and most of his body paralyzed. His personality, his ability to breath with life support, everything was gone.
I was there when we took him off of life support. It was hard to watch my 17 year old brother struggle for breath and die. Traumatic actually. I had flashbacks at the most inconvenient times for months after. I remember having to watch my dad tell my little brother Micah, 12 years old at the time, Tyler was going to die. My heart broke. Over and over and over again, it broke.
Tyler and I were close, with only 2 1/2 years separating us in age. The last few years of his life, we became more than annoying siblings to each other. We became friends. Confidants. He told me everything. He asked my advice on everything. When I say everything, I mean everything. We talked about everything from dating to porn to God. We talked about death. We talked about love. We talked a lot.
My favorite memories are when him and I would escape our house and go to Borders bookstore. He'd read computer animation/code books and I'd read fantasy/sci fi novel. We'd split a cheese stuffed asiago pretzel. He'd get orange cream soda and I'd get Tazo peach iced tea.
He looked up to me. He loved me. He'd get this look in his eyes that said he was proud of me. It meant the world to me.
I didn't think I was going to cry about it today, but I've found myself unable to stop crying for the past two hours. Some wounds don't heal. Some wounds till open from time to time.
I miss you Tyler. I'll see you again one day. This is not our farewell.