The last time I thought about you was a few weeks ago.
It was because some friends and I were discussing the best animated Disney movies. As we went through the list, the title Brother Bear popped into my head, and I immediately began expressing my love for the film, declaring it my personal favorite.
Now that I think about it, I don’t even really remember what happens in the movie. I vaguely recall a plot about two brothers who turn into bears, then turn back into humans, then decide to turn back into bears – or maybe something sort of like that.
I didn’t realize that I miss you until tonight, and I think part of the reason why it started to hurt so much is simply because I wasn’t even aware I missed you.
The last time you called was to wish me happy birthday, and that was four months ago. I can’t remember the last time I saw you.
Ever since you moved out, we’ve gradually lost touch. Now when you come to visit I feel a sort of distance between us. Maybe it’s because you’re over a decade older than I am, but even still, when I was in kindergarten and you were in high school I remember you used to laugh at my jokes, or at least pretend to laugh at them.
Now it feels like we don’t have anything in common. When you do come home to visit you’d rather sit with Dad in the kitchen than come play video games with us. It didn’t used to be like that. But even if you do choose to spend time with your siblings, it would probably mean throwing around a ball in the yard with our brother, and I would either sit and watch you both or just stay inside.
I remember you babysitting while our parents weren’t home, how you used to sit us on your bed and then flop onto it beside us to see how high we would bounce.
I remember the countless hours we spent in the pool. I would cling onto your back like a leech, and even though it annoyed you you let me stay there. I remember the first time I went down the slide I sat on your lap because I was too little to go by myself. Or when you would throw me up in the air and how it felt like I was flying, how time stopped and I was weightless, until I finally splashed back into the water.
I used to think of you as a superhero, and in some ways I guess I still do. I believed everything you told me and never questioned it, not just because you were so much older and wiser, but simply because you were my big brother.
I always took our time together for granted. It’s been some five years since you graduated college, and even when you were still in school you barely lived at home. I know you’re still looking around for what you want to do, and I know you might be unsure even though you wouldn’t admit it. I just hope you’re happy.
You’re always busy. It’s either work or a softball tournament or plans with friends. You never come on vacation with us anymore. I don’t blame you one bit, that’s just life. But sometimes I wish you would try a little bit harder to make time for me.
I like to imagine that you’d live closer to me if it weren’t for your girlfriend. Don’t get me wrong, I think she is very good to you and very lovely, but sometimes I can’t help thinking that maybe if you weren’t with her I would get to see you more often.
It’s hard for me to believe that you’re grown up now. I don’t want to believe it.
Looking back to that movie conversation with friends, the reason why I vied for Brother Bear so intently was because it reminded me of you. Maybe you remember the nights when I wanted to sleepover in your room. When I did, that’s what we always watched – because it was your favorite movie.
Even though you’ll never see this and I’ll never tell you, know that I love you very much, and I miss you.