I wrote this for my older cousin... He was shot in Dec. of 2012. (Not in the army, just wrong place at the wrong time... He's been out of the army for years) He almost died... I had only met him once when i was little, and didn't even remember him. I only met him in November of 2013 and he wasn't happy where he was, so I didn't really get to meet the real him till about 3 1/2 months ago... Anyway, he seems so tough and like things don't get to him, but he really opens up to me and he is a very sensitive guy. So I wrote this for him... I find it amazing how you can know someone, but not really know someone, more like know of them... Then their life almost slips away and you can't believe that you ALMOST didn't have the chance to get close to them. When they turn out to be one of the most important people to you, and become like a sibling. Even though they are related to you, you were never close. Now you can't imagine your life without them! You treasure every moment you have with them and thank the Lord for it! Your eyes are opened by this. You realize how fragile and how precious life is... You have a totally different outlook on everything... Your life is changed for the better, and you wouldn't trade your time with that person for anything! You are glad they are in your life, and hope they feel the same. When they start saying "I love you" FIRST. When they say "Till you get tired of me and tell me to leave, I'll always be RIGHT HERE for you. For anything and everything... When you open up to that person when you feel all alone. When they hug you and tell you that everything is going to be ok, and that they are here for you.... When they stay up listening to you. When they say nothing sometimes, just listen, give you a hug, and let you know they love you... That makes it all worth it for me. To be able to open up and cry in front of someone that I've really only known for a few months. Even though they were always in your life, doesn't mean they were always part of your life... Just take these moments from now on and run with them! Laugh, cry, and have fun making memories with them! That's what life is all about! Don't wait for life to come to you with adventures, go out there and make it happen! All the things in life that are coming (your future) is like an amusement park ride... Just make sure you want to take the time to wait in line for it. Make sure it's what you want. Thank you Lord our Heavenly Father for this special person that you have blessed me and my family with! Thank you for giving me someone to spend time with me, and teach me things, and just to really care, listen and tell me that it's ok... I love you so much and you're like the brother I never had, until now! Love you, Elysia Last night I walked him out to his trailer like I always do every night, and handed it to him. I did NOT expect his reaction AT ALL! I was pleasantly surprised! He is not a "touchy feely" person or a huger at all... I got the sweetest, most heartfelt reaction ever! he stood there with a blank look on his face, then he was quiet for a min, then he looked at me and he had tears in his eyes! Then he hugged me and went "Awwwwwww! Thank you! I love you so much! That's awesome! That's the best thing I've gotten in a loooooong time!" It was so sweet! then he hugged me soooooooo tight and so long and kissed my cheek. And I started crying so hard! So he hugged me again and said "Aw, I love you! That's so awesome!" When I was walking away, I looked back into the window and he was just looking at it and smiling! Kinda made my whole week! I've been crying all day thinking about it, and thanking God for him!