When my brother first left home to study/work abroad, I plunged myself in the sea of agitation — I got extremely sad and lonely. Now, I’m not nearly that depressed because let’s just face it: people in your life will always come and go. It does not really matter much to me anymore when my brother leaves, but it still feels a little bit vacant.
Growing up with an excessively kind brother, I had always taken him for granted. Whenever I encountered any difficulties — whether it was about lessons or practical everyday stuff — I would constantly ask my brother for help. And I would assume him to perpetually be just “there, in the corner of the room, reading something”. It really hit me when he left for his first year of university: I should never take anyone, out of their kindness, for granted. When he left, things were not the same. Due to the distance, conversations got more succinct; my brother and I could go months without talking or even chatting on social media. Some days I even forgot that I got a sibling. This condition worsened with the fact that he was an apathetic person who refused to converse if not asked.
Despite that, I feel huge gratitude towards Jesus, God, Holy Spirit, the universe, etc that they have conspired in giving me a brother like him. Any life problems can easily be eradicated (erased) with the idea of “at least I still have my brother”. No other living, breathing human on earth is nearly as patient and considerate as my brother. His kindhearted disposition confuses the heck out of me: how can a person be so patient to the point that he NEVER, EVER gets angry? How? And when he faces life problems, he only keeps quite and perseveres. Never in his life has he complained to me — his only sister/relative — due to his troubles. If ever he gets disappointed in life, he merely speaks in a real soft voice, which saddens me more.
My brother is a HUGE support system in my life. Without him, I’d never read any novels. God damn, without him, I’d never learn English. I was so bad in English. Tried to learn every methods available to memorize vocabularies, yet I still failed. At that time, I thought to myself, “maybe English and Indonesian are the same if I add some alphabets among the Indonesian words. For example, ‘apel’ can be ‘apple’ if I add one more letter of P”. My thinking was so idiotic as I was hopeless in learning a foreign language. However, things altered when I saw my brother doing stuff, you know? I saw him devouring books (from TinTin & Donald Duck comics to Sherlock Holmes) and playing piano straight after he listened to some random songs. I thought to myself how my brother was probably a magician in his previous life, as he could do literally anything. Ever since I was little, I have always made my brother suffer by asking too many questions about everything I could ever think of. I’d ask questions from “who is Che Guevara?” to “what causes the Cold War?”, and he would always, always, answer thoroughly. I wonder how can a person know so much.
Most of the knowledge that I lock up inside my medula oblongata (brain) come from my brother’s stories. He’d randomly tell stories about Joseph Stalin’s children, World War II, Suki Kim’s reluctant essay, and so on. Things that go unnoticed by other people.. he learns them by heart.
To my brother, if you ever read this.. please remember that I will always have your back.. You might never tell me the difficulties that you’ve been going through, and that is okay. Keep hanging on there, because I am also hanging on here to achieve abstract goals in the unimaginable future… A good person with a good heart; a good person who owns no bad intention — someday all of your sadness will go away… I thank you for everything