THINGS I ONLY STARTED APPRECIATING AFTER MY BROTHER DIED

It was two years ago at 3:30 in the morning. Allow me to get real ~deep~ for a moment.
  1. My hands
    It wasn't until high school that I realized that people like, look at your hands. Nails are a thing people consider. Because of my incredibly dry skin my hands look hella gross for eight months out of the year. They crack and bleed and it's a mess. My brother and I have the same skin issues and structurally our hands are the exact same, mine are just a bit smaller. Sometimes I'll scratch my nose or stretch my fingers and it will be like I'm looking at him. It's strange and it's magical.
  2. Text messages
    Having years worth of conversations saved is amazing. You don't realize how important minor conversations are until they're all you have left. Texts from him asking if I want pizza are so mundane and yet still manage to capture a fraction of who he was in that moment. What he was thinking about. He was hungry and probably bored and wanted me to pay. It's a glimpse of him, the real him, forever persevered in a tiny text bubble.
  3. Pictures
    This seems obvious but you really don't cherish pictures of someone until you realize that you'll never take another of them. Pictures immortalize people. A day will come when I am old and he'll still be young, smiling behind the glass of a frame, his hair perfectly messy and a smile on his lips.
  4. Smells
    I have this one shirt of his that, no matter how many times I wash it, always smells like him. A little boy in my class uses the same hair gel that he used to. And every so often I find myself in the men's section of the grocery store sniffing Dove for Men, missing the way the scent would drift through the house after he showered.
  5. Not being awake at 2 am
    I used to think staying up late was cool. I would wear the bags under my eyes like a badge of honor and brag about how I went two sleep three hours before my alarm went off. Now I pray to gods I don't believe in that I fall asleep because the middle of the night plays host to emotions I spend all day running from.
  6. My sisters
    You know how when you lose one sense your other ones become heightened? The same goes for siblings. I lost my brother and I found myself obsessed with my sisters. Every emotion I have towards them is heightened. I love them more, I worry about them more, I even think that they're funnier than they used to be. I'm constantly using every little scrap of them I can get to try and fill the void he left behind.