Once I noticed Feb. 1 on the calendar I started to dread today. I was asking myself if it has really been two years since I got that awful phone call that Tye was gone. It seems like I just got to Hawaii but it also seems like we’ve been missing him for far too long. I’ve been processing for several days what to write today. Can I just say it sucks? What could I say that wouldn’t stab my mother in the heart again? If I don’t say anything people will think I’ve forgotten. How can I forget? If I say something they’ll think I’m asking for attention or pity. I want neither, only peace. A nasty thing happens when you lose someone so tragically.

I’m not sure if it’s your heart or your brain, but you somehow relive those horrible moments on the anniversary of those days. I woke up too early this morning, Just like I did on Feb. 5, 2013. My eyes were dry and I inched downstairs. Mom called me in the middle of the night when Dad died the night before Ray’s first deployment. I always suspected that my Dad would die young. It was horrible. The gut punch I took when Ned made that phone call was for all of us. My poor mother was alone in an airport. All I could think was I did that to her asking her to come see us. My kids lost their hero, their crazy, funny police officer, k-9 training, bigger than life uncle. I have no delusions that I was Tye’s first phone call when he was in trouble. Most of the time I wasn’t. A lot of the time I was his last. I felt like the life was sucked out of me knowing he wouldn’t call again. Did I mention this sucks?

In the past two years so much has happened. So much that Tye missed. How many times has Mom said something that I think, “I need to text him right now. Can you believe our mother said…?” I want him to tease Arleigh about being a band geek and threaten the boys that are creeping around. I need him to cheer for Hanan in the play and tell her how beautiful her voice is when she sings. He would love to see Bria play soccer. Oh my word, he would be bonding with Jack over his new found love of the Hulk. I don’t know if we will ever have moments again that I don’t think I wish I could send a clip of it to Tye. All those times I think I should text him. I have moments where I think it’s okay because surely he’s watching over them. Then I decide he’s not. He’s having too much fun to care about what’s going on in the car line.

I’ve considered writing letters to him. Heaven knows I want to yell at him. He left at the worst time. When Dad died, I had peace knowing Mom and Tye were in the same house and they would take care of each other. If left me to live this fabulous navy life in Iceland and then Maryland and Virginia. I never worried about Mom or her pain because Tye would make her laugh and she could try to keep him on the straight and narrow. Here we are… I’m on an island. I want to beat Tye with a stick. Mom could’ve really used him this year. Watching Ned lose his battle was awful. Hearing about it from here was torture because there was nothing I could do and no Tye to boss around. I really miss him being my hands even if it was frustrating to get him going. Then there was the phone call. Knowing Mom was hurt. Later finding out her elbow was basically crushed. Thank goodness for Nana Bonnie. Tye I could’ve really used you then. 

Dang I miss him. I miss the inappropriate texts and trying to make sure the kids weren’t holding the phone when they came through. I miss answering the phone and hearing, “Can anybody hear me?” because he was going to tell me a horrifically dirty joke. I can barely watch a Titans v. Texans game. It’s not the same without him around to talk smack to even if the Titans are horrible. I miss the phone call telling me that he had sent a text, telling me I had to watch some video. I would tell him I was in the car with the kids. Five minutes later he was back on the phone asking if I had pulled over to watch it. Um No! I just want to yell at him again. 

Losing your only sibling is like losing an appendage. It hurts really bad. You can learn to live without it. You can even function pretty well most days. Life is never ever the same. 

I miss Tye. I miss this guy…

Arleigh's 4th birthday 006The one that came for a weekend when Ray was in Iraq. He ate an obscene amount of food at our favorite Mexican joint. He tried and failed to put a Barbie jeep together for Arleigh’s birthday and then had to listen to me heckle him about it. He then rode the 14 hours back to Kentucky with me. He claimed to get me out of a speeding ticket. I think I did just fine on my own. I wouldn’t have been speeding anyway if he didn’t have me so spun up. 

 

 

 

I miss this guy…

IMG_2209He’s the one that taught Jack to love Sundrop. He’s the one that let Arleigh drive the mule when she was all of 8. He’s the one that showed my too little to watch it kids Dumb & Dumber and then acted like I was the horrible person for not letting them watch. Grandma was sitting right there the whole time by the way. He’s the one constantly jumping in the pond with the kids and telling them what the next thing they had to see was. I don’t know how many times he would say, “It’s just PG-13.” My kids were 5 and 6…

 

 

 

P000653I miss the guy that had me bring my days old daughter to a penis museum because he read about it in Maxim magazine. That picture is Tye with the curator/owner, his copy of Maxim and a whale penis. Good times.

 

 

 

 

Sorry Mom. I deal with things by thumbing through old pictures. It helps me remember the good, the bad and even the ugly. Did I mention that I miss my irritating little brother? There are so many stories to tell. So many memories I want to preserve for my kids. Today, I can’t. Instead I’ll post a few pictures I have and I’ll be happy for the wounds to start to scab over again tomorrow. 

IMG_2382 IMG_2367 IMG_1736 IMG_5477 Bria Faith 033_2 April 2006 002 First Tooth 042 KY Summer 083 Grandma Tye Winery Zoo 045 Grandma Tye Winery Zoo 043 Christmas04 161 Christmas04 157 Tye1 Tye_Han Tye&Gun