Like a sucker punch out of left field

Something has been bothering me a lot lately. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. I haven’t been sleeping well lately (which isn’t really that unusual), I’ve been scatterbrained (again, not that unusual) and really just couldn’t concentrate on anything. It really bugged me that I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Anyone that knows me, knows I’m not one to talk about my feelings at all, good or bad. It just isn’t me, which is totally fine, seriously! I’m an introvert when it comes to myself, that’s just how it is.

That also makes this hard to write, but screw it, I need to get it out. Don’t worry, I have plenty of people I could easily talk to about it. I have a very loving and understanding wife (seriously, she’s the best person I’ve ever met, she’s amazing and the reason I smile most of the time!), I have any number of friends and family I could call. However, there are times when you just want to write something and not actually talk to someone. It’s just how I deal with things a lot of the time.

It wasn’t until I was driving home from doing the grocery shopping today, that I realized what was bothering me so badly. And when I did realize it, it was like a punch to the gut. One so hard I am not afraid to admit, I nearly had to pull over. What possibly could give me such a reaction? Well, a CD (yes they still exist). I was pretty bored with the radio, and decided to flip on a CD instead of trying to fiddle with my phone while driving, because I’m smart like that.

The moment the first lyrics came through the speakers, I lost it:

Is the weight of the world on my shoulders?

Those lyrics hit me like a ton of bricks, but not because the weight of the world is on my shoulders, but because of my sister. I’ve been thinking about her a lot. I do often. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about her, and miss her more than words can describe. But lately, it’s been worse. I couldn’t quite figure out why. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t need an excuse to miss my sister. I never will and I will never apologize for missing her.

Why would those lyrics hit me like a ton of bricks and bring her to the forefront of my mind? Well, it’s not the lyrics, its’ the music. It’s the album. Leave A Whisper by Shinedown was one of her favorite albums. It’s been in my CD player in my car for who knows how long. I just tend to not listen to it often, because it makes me miss her so very much. I remember all those times driving along, both of us singing at the top of our lungs to the CD. I remember all those times rocking out with my sister. I can almost look over and see her there, singing along with the songs with me, and it hurts. Bad.

In a few short weeks, I’ll be the same age my sister was when she passed away 3 years ago. And I realized, that’s what’s been bothering me so much lately. We are all three years apart, my sister, my brother and myself. But after this year, I’ll have out lived her. She was always so strong, always the rock I knew would always be there, and now, she’s gone. Not one day goes by that I don’t think about her. Not one day that I don’t wish I could give her a call, just to say hi.

Heck, I even miss her kicking my ass sometimes. Even when she’d grab the muscle below your jaw while you were driving (I’ve nearly crashed more than once due to her doing that!), or her scaring the daylights out of you because it amused her so much.

I guess sometimes I really do have the weight of the world on my shoulders. But I know that she’s up there someplace, looking down on me helping me in some way, to carry those burdens. I know that she wouldn’t want me to be sad. In fact, she’d probably pick on me for it, in the ways only she could. So I’ll lift my head, remember the side of her that few of us got to see, and keep moving along.

I’ll mourn in the way only a brother can, and know that she loved me just as much as I loved her. Even if she had strange ways of showing it sometimes. And I’ll keep listening to that CD, and think of her every time I hear it. And I’ll smile, because I know she’s no longer in pain, and that I’ll get to see her again someday. I look forward to it, and I know she does too. And I know she wouldn’t want us sad. She would want us to remember her with a smile, so that’s what I’ll do.

After all, troubles will come, and they will pass.