30 SEP 2023
Little Red House
Under the Stairs
Sitting in front of an electric Underwood. A 565. It isn’t fancy. Or particularly pretty. Functional. Business. Drab in its presentation.
But, I can make it work.
Some stickers. A stencil here or there. Perhaps some paint. Or, maybe just let the kids free to have at it, with markers and paint pens. Because why not?
Colour never hurts. Neither does another typewriter. How many? Who fucking knows…too many to count. And, that’s okay. As long as hers are hers and mine are mine. Because we haven’t yet crossed that relationship threshold. The one where collections are truly combined.
Maybe next year.
Or maybe never.
And, that’s okay. I don’t want her ever getting lost. There’s been enough of that bullshit for one lifetime. So now, it’s time to play.
Because there might not be a tomorrow.
A lesson that reverberates hard on a random Michigan Saturday night. Because bodies aren’t designed to be hugged through a bag. But, that is what happened. There is no point in pretending otherwise.
Everything is the same. Yet somehow, so fucking different.
Memories flood into the spaces left behind. Drifting up out of nowhere. Catching me off guard. And aching to touch the grace of a god I will never really understand.
Christmases at Beige House. Devouring the yearly Roast Fuckerbeast. Summer vacation visits. Endless Nerf gun wars. Shooting B.B. guns off the deck before it was remodeled into the Conservatory. His first fireworks.
Twenty-four is too fucking young for a lot of things. Knowing who you are. Picking a career that sticks. Being in love for real. Cremation.
Memories and hope gone up in smoke. The promise of future years and reconciliations crumbled into an urn full of ash. Limitless potential squandered for the sake of a permanent nothingness.
There’s been whispers of better places. Prayers shared because there is fuck all else to be done about it. And people always feel compelled to say something.
But he was a polite atheist. Didn’t really believe, but wasn’t a dick about it. Which was kind of rare in our family. He chose instead to let live in whatever manifestation someone chose for themselves. Backing plays that older generations could never wrap their Boomer heads around.
In the midst of all of that, he somehow lost himself. An eventuality many of us sometimes face. He just didn’t get the time to figure things out. And that fucking sucks.
Hearts are breaking tonight, across the expanses of these flyover fields.
Things will never be the same.
I knew him. And I loved him.
I was fucking proud to have been his Uncle.
If you, or someone you love, is currently struggling with addiction, please don’t be afraid to reach out. Call the hotline at 1-800-662-4357. Tell a friend. Hell, call *me*.
We’re all in this together.
No one should ever have to hurt alone.