The Day He Left

September 29, 2017

The day he had to leave was hard. He had to go, I knew it, but I never thought this day would come. Let alone come so soon. It felt as if summer had just started and he had just graduated. Like we had just celebrated the holiday we made up when we were little called “dork day” and I had just finished squishing the green mush made of random plants we found outside that we called “soup”. It felt as if he was just chasing me in his Buzz Lightyear halloween costume from three years prior that clung to his calves because it was too small. I was running as fast as I could trying not to trip over my baby blue Cinderella dress and blue sparkly plastic heels with a Cinderella gem on the toe because they were too big. All of these amazing memories visited my brain the night before. The night before we would take him to his dorm and help him unpack his belongings into this unfamiliar place. The night before all the old memories would eventually be replaced in his mind with new faces, new names, and new experiences. I dreaded the next day and I didnt want to wake up. I could have slept forever. When I woke up I laid in my bed and tried to go back to sleep because as long as I was asleep, nothing was happening. No one was leaving and I wasn't sad. As long as I was asleep, the old memories wouldn't be replaced and I would still be running from him hearing the familiar click clack of my plastic heels hitting the linoleum floor. So I went back to sleep because everything was bliss in my dreams. I woke up to the loud noise of packing. All of my brothers items were slowly placed in cardboard boxes ready to be rehomed in a small environment shared with three other stinky, sticky, nervous boys. He was going to Long Beach which fortunately was not that far but everyday without him it would seem like he getting was farther and farther away. The anticipation of packing our sad, grey expedition with his belongings was the worst. I wanted to help pack and I told myself I wasn't going to cry until we got to his dorm. Except my eyes were full of tears and they wanted to be noticed so they uncontrollably released their juices and turned bright red. When you have blue eyes everyone you look at knows you have been crying because the contrast of red and blue is so prominent. It is so embarrassing. Anyway, before we headed out of the town that once hosted my big brother we stopped to eat. We sat down at a booth and tried to make these last few hours count. There was a lot of crying because apparently my eyes still wanted attention and they hadn't yet figured out how to control themselves. After the saddest family breakfast I’ve ever experienced, it was time to drive the dreadful two hours to my brothers new home.

 

The drive up there was so emotional and long that I never thought it would end. I plugged my headphones into my phone and let music penetrate my ears as I thought about what life was going to be like without him. I would get so invested in a song and forget about what was happening but there were still tears running down my face and old dried tears resting on my face being rehydrated by the new tears that were falling. Then after what seemed like the longest two hours of my life I saw it. I saw the sign that directed my brother to his new home…”CSULB Beachside College”. My heart dropped because it all became so real in this moment. At this point I ran out of tears and now I just felt sad but also excited for my brother and the new experiences he will have. We went through the process of registering him into CSULB and then we got the key to his dorm. I was excited to see what his new home looked like and to meet his room mates but I was still sad and emotional throughout this whole process. Once we brought all of his belongings up to his dorm it was time to leave. All of it happened so fast and I wasn’t ready. I wasn't ready to give up my brother. I wasn't ready to say goodbye for a while. I wasn't ready to be on my own. I was scared and I didn't know how to react so I cried...a lot. We walked through the long hallway looking at all the other newcomers whose faces were also red and puffy from tears. Out the doors we went and into the car. We sat there for a while and we all just cried. This was the hardest part. I didn't want to cry because I knew he was going to have fun but I couldn't help myself. I had no control over my body. Seeing my family hurting and crying didn't help either. This was a heart-breaking moment. After about five minutes of non stop crying from everyone, we got out of the car to hug each other and say goodbye. I can't describe the feeling of hugging my brother for the last time in what feels like forever but is really just a couple weeks. He has been there my whole life. He was my first best friend. He always gave me advice and he was always there when I wanted to bother someone like the annoying little sister I was. Anyway, I hugged him for the last time in a while and his salty tears dropped into my hair as he towered over me and mine got soaked up by his dark grey shirt. Then I stepped back and watched my parents do the same thing.

 

My dad and I watched as the pain in my mom's heart became obvious with her facial expressions as her face buried deeper into his chest, his tears dripping onto his head and hers getting soaked into his shirt as well. Then she stepped back and we watched my dad crack a joke to lighten the mood. Needless to say… it didn't work. We all laughed pathetically and tried to smile through the pain anyway. My mom and I stood back and watched the tears roll down my dad's face and watched his signature smile turn into the uncommon look of hurt. Then we all piled into the car and my brother went to his dorm...all by himself. On the drive home I plugged in my earphones and once again let the music penetrate my ears so my mind would be focused on something other than the fact that he had just left. The whole two hours home I cried but I was unaware of it because I was numb to the feeling of the tears rolling down my face. After a while my eyes learned to control themselves and no longer wanted attention. The prominent contrast between the abused veins in my sclera and the bright blue green color of my iris had dimmed and it was no longer noticeable that I had just been crying. We finally got home and I crawled into my bed and cuddled with my giant teddy bear. I was mentally exhausted and I had no more energy left in me. I slowly closed my eyes and drifted off to sleep awaiting the bliss of my dreams to come.






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