My brother, Thomas Halley Williams, who we all call “Hal.”
I was 13 when he was born. Mami got sick after having him and I had to learn how to take care of a newborn baby very quickly (hint: it was really really hard!) So in high school I didn’t get to do a lot of things I wanted to. Like join clubs, do after school activities, hang out with friends (well, not that I actually had many friends back then – being of the bookworm, lone wolf variety). Even after Mami got better, both of my parents were working so they needed as much of my help as possible. So Hal and I were always really close. I was more than a big sister to him – I was one of his parents.
But Hal never made it easy on us. Unlike my other brother, Buck, and me, he never swallowed the little stories Mami and Daddy would use to persuade us to do something. Even when he was a toddler, he thought like a lawyer. Never going along with anything anyone else said until he confirmed it for himself.
Now this kind of attitude can get you into a lot of trouble in school. And he did have issues. But even though he wasn’t the best student in the world, he taught us all so many things.
How to do things your own way. How to question authority. How to be incredibly loyal to those you love, even if you don’t always see things the same way. How to be beautifully generous and thoughtful even when you don’t have a cent to your name. How to be a warrior angel even when you had the devil in yer eye. Basically: How To Kick Ass On A Daily Basis.
Happy Birthday, Hal! You would have been 30 today if a stupid motorcycle hadn’t take you away from us almost 6 years ago. But you’re the kind of spirit that just shines brighter with each year of your physical absence. I still give you a little wave at the end of my daily meditations and I still invite you onstage with me whenever it’s time to rock out a crowd. So you’re never really, really gone.
So know that even though we’ve learned to live different lives without you, you’ll always be in our hearts. Oh, and say hey to John Lennon, Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain next time yall jam!
All my love,