You probably will never read this letter but I had to write it exactly the way I want to say it to you as if you were here. To my readers, this is really directed towards three specific people in my life that were really dear to me at different points in my life. My grandmother (who raised me), my big brother (who always stood up for me) and my friend (childhood friends).
Here goes. Grandmother, you know that I never cried much. Although I did cry lots of tears the day I realized that I would never see you again (sigh). Every tear that fell hit a different place inside of me. Just to let you know, the stories you told me about your travelling the world and climbing pyramids in Egypt with heels on still sticks with me. You inspired me to travel the world, to see and do different things in foreign countries.
Today, I can say that you would be proud of me. I would give anything to tell you about my trip to California where I experienced the Body Art exhibition in Silicon Valley. It was weird but definitely amazing. The idea of the exhibition was to show humans how they look on the inside. Dying people donated their bodies for the purpose once they died. They had this one hand that had only veins; no bones, no skin, not even muscle tissues, just veins. I stared at it forever.
Another piece showed a skinned, singer’s body split down the middle and separated into halves. His lungs were huge! I have lots of stories. I just wanted to say thank you for your time and attention to me. I still look for someone who can understand and motivate me like you used to. People that get close to me are used to my mother and think I’m trying to find one like her but they never got to meet the sweet person that you were. Your examples of love are what motivated me. I miss you.
Big brother. I think it’s harder to write to you because of the respect I have for you. There are some things that I wish we sat and talked about man to man, heart to heart. One thing that stands out is, how could you let life get the best of you? The second is, how could you always find a reason to laugh and make people laugh so much? You were the definition of a playboy for me growing up. Not all of your girls were 10’s (lol) but you definitely had your share of mixed numbers growing up.
I love your daughter like my own and as much as I can help her I will. She’s grown into a really mature young lady with a beautiful daughter. Still a bit unruly when she’s ready but who isn’t. But I know she misses you, we all do. At your funeral there was a moment that I think would bring tears to your already closed eyes.
She came in late and I was sitting on another bench (with Lotion those). After about an hour into the singing, she looked at me and ran across to me (while the service was going on) and hugged me and cried on my shoulder. You know I’m not the emotional one but we both felt the same loss. The loss of someone we truly loved. We may not have seen eye to eye on some things but you were the first person I looked up to as a young boy. Outspoken yet easy-going. You always used to tell people that I was the Christian version of you. I saw the respect in that. Although I’m not the extremist I used to be in that sense, I always appreciated you for the level of respect others had for you.
To my brother from another mother. We went from hip hop heads to playing football and basketball in the road then to church missions in the ghetto. It was a ride. One of the most determined people I know. Through all of the pain you went through, you always looked forward to being in heaven and enjoying life as it should be. What I will say is this, your life has inspired many. If there was a book about you, I’m sure it would be titled, “For Christ I live, for Christ I die”. They say you should judge a man by his character but your philosophy was that you should judge a man by his faith. Your drive inspired even me not to make excuses. God bless you brother and may your life continue to speak through the lives that you have touched.
Readers, people come and go in this life but there are a few that stick. They may not stick around but they will stick inside of your heart. Crazy thing is, you may not even know it until they’re gone. The best thing to do is never to take for granted the time you have with anyone. Your life means something to someone else. Never forget that. We should all live in such a way that our legacy creates a book for us. Then when someone takes the time to follow your journey, they’re inspired to go even further.
You may say I’m crazy for writing to dead loved ones. Get this, some of us are dead inside already. I don’t think that I’m crazy because it still feels like they’re alive. Their life lives on through me. When was the last time you resolved issues that you’ve kept on the shelf of bitterness? Life is short and so are some people. (Smile) Let’s not take it for granted. Love in such a way that it not only lives on, love so that it can inspire people to live more.