In the blink of an eye everything that you’ve ever complained about can become meaningless and trivial. It’s in that moment when you find yourself wishing for the small hurdles of traffic jams and shitty ex-boyfriends. Manageable shit—the “quick fixes” in life.
This is also when you realize that your life will never be simple again. My moment occurred six weeks ago when I received a call from my mom that changed my life forever.
My older brother was dead.
It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon. January 9th 2016; one of my best friend’s birthdays. I had just successfully finished my first week of work at my new job and was celebrating my official one week living in my new apartment here on South Beach, Miami. I was feeling on top of the world. Unstoppable.
I laid down around 3pm for a nap and was almost immediately awaken by an incoming call to my cell.
It was my mom.
I cleared the call and rolled back over, but before going back to sleep something told me to check the voicemail she’d left.
There were no words in her message at first. Just guttural screams. Then the words:
“TONY CALL ME!! OH GOD CALL ME”.
[I haven’t found the courage to delete this voicemail yet. In fact I still have nightmares about it over a month later.]
I called my mom back and through screams and wails she explained to me that my brother was found dead earlier that day.
I immediately fell to the floor and crawled my way onto my balcony. I couldn’t breathe. For the first time in my life I literally felt my heart break.
Living alone in a new city, I spent the next two weeks grieving in solitude until the day of his funeral, January 23rd 2016. It was pretty horrendous but I realized quickly that I’m a lot stronger than I’ve given myself credit for in the past. Suddenly all of the pain I had felt during break-ups in the past was like a paper cut compared to the sword that was now hanging out of my chest. Suddenly I truly knew what pain was.
But before I knew it, the agonizing fourteen days were over and I was on a plane heading back home to bury my older brother.
As I loaded his casket into the hearse on that dreary, rainy Saturday, I realized that so few things in life matter as much as we think they do.
I honestly haven’t been able to blog since this day because this was when realized that so many of the things that I would have jumped on a soapbox about in the past truly DON’T FUCKING MATTER in the grand scheme of life.
Life can be short and beautiful and fucked up and hilarious and painful and magical…
…so why do we spend it obsessing over it’s tiny miseries? There are so many fucked up things in life that are MUCH worst than the annoying, minuscule speed bumps that we drive over everyday. So why focus on them?
Since losing my brother I literally find myself stopping and smelling the roses. I wake up early almost every morning to watch the sunrising over the buildings on South Beach from my balcony; no matter how tired I am. There are just so many colors that we don’t notice and sounds that we don’t hear because we are so consumed by our own petty, first world obsessed egos. If we could all just take one minute out of each day to truly appreciate something or someone for their beauty; inside & out, we’d be so much better for it.
It’s been one month exactly since we laid him to rest and since that day MY NEW GOAL IN LIFE HAS BECOME TO FIND BEAUTY…TO FIND PASSION…AND TO SURROUND MYSELF WITH THINGS AND PEOPLE THAT I LOVE; NO MATTER WHO OR WHAT THAT MIGHT BE…
While my brother and I had a complicated relationship, especially closer to the end, he taught me in death all of the things that he wasn’t able to teach me while he was alive.
And for that I thank him.
This post was written because of and for my crazy, irritating, brilliant, complicated, wild, charismatic, spoiled, passionate, smart ass, brave, confident, whitty, accepting, misunderstood, loving brother…
This earth couldn’t handle you. You’re an unpolished, imperfect, wild, bright, burning star…keep shining. The song of your life will never stop playing in my ears…
I love you.
RIP Freddy aka”June” aka Freydo 11.3.1981-01.09.2016
While writing this post I’ve had a song playing on repeat because I know you would love it. I think it accurately describes everything that you wanted to be and to do with your music. Enjoy bro. xo