It Comes In Waves

Grief is an insidious thing. Just when you think you are starting to turn a corner, along comes a trigger, a memory, a thought, or something you see or hear, and then a rush of emotions follows.

For days, I’ve felt like an elephant is constantly sitting on my chest. Other times, it feels like just a broomstick being pressed against my heart. An invisible broomstick that never goes away.

I really miss my brother. I was able to find the photo of us on the golf course in Hawaii, and that was a small victory, because it was a very happy memory of a time about 11 years ago when both of us were in a great place.

Cheo & Zik golfing in Hawaii, 2006
Cheo and Zik on the golf course in Hawi, North Kohala, Hawaii.

Come to think of it, don’t know of a time after that that we were able to get together for some brotherly competition. Unless, of course, you count our hours of online multiplayer gaming playing Call of Duty: Black Ops II. Those times were just like the old days, either playing against each other or on the same team. And then the trash talking by text or a photo of the final results to gloat a little. It was a thin but powerful proxy for the days and years gone past, when we used to battle it out in the racquetball court, on the basketball court, at the ping-pong table, or even on the golf course.

As far as the “five stages of grief,” I think I’m still in denial, the first stage. It’s hard to believe he’s actually gone. Especially with Christmas approaching, knowing (or even thinking but not quite believing) that we will never get to spend Christmas together again is a tough pill to swallow. Even though we haven’t spent Christmas together for more than 10 years. In the back of my mind (until now) that thought of “maybe someday” we would get our Texas and Florida families together and knowing we can’t now is the weight of the elephant on my chest.

It comes in waves, and boy can that elephant surf!


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