Monday, October 22, 2007

Brett's Favorite Holiday (after Christmas, of course!

Brett LOVED Halloween. He used to tell me it was his favorite holiday after Christmas. Here he is w/ cousin Alexis on his 2nd Halloween. He was a rabbit and he loved the costume I made for him except we both were a little upset we couldn't get the ears to stand up! I used to make all his costumes as I love to sew and he loved to wear them. Each year they got more elaborate until he got to be 8 or so and all he ever wanted to be was a ghost. So, it was the old, white sheet route after that. The absolute best times I've had were taking him trick or treating with his cousins.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Some Common Misconceptions

Brett's Dad and I have been asked several times about things that people who didn't know Brett have written on the internet. So, for the record, are some answers:
1. Brett did NOT keep a journal. He was too busy, and probably a bit too "macho" for that. He would definitely have thought that a little too effeminate for a real man to do. He did write random notes here and there, mostly in his Scheduler for school. Many of the notes were about Salvia. A ridiculous amount actually. He was a straight A student so I never had to check any of his work or ask him what he had for homework. Now I wish I had a reason to have looked in that Scheduler. All those references to Salvia definitely would have set off a red alarm for me.

2. Brett was NOT an alcoholic, wasn't on Prozac, wasn't on Accutane, didn't do other drugs. I know he had tried pot a few times but I believed that was normal for a senior in HS. I wasn't happy about it at all, but it really is a right of passage. I feel Salvia is far more dangerous than pot will ever be. Also, Brett was drug tested where he worked part time, as part of his employment requirements. He had 2 drug tests in 6 mos. and they were negative for all drugs. He was employed there when he died. His posthumous drug test showed no drugs, which isn't surprising since Salvia metabolizes within 15 mins. Thanks to Brett's posthumous drug sample, our medical examiner is the first in the country to develop a drug test for Salvia.

3. Brett was never treated for depression. He was actually never treated for anything. He was as healthy as a horse, since the day he was born! A few years in school he almost made perfect attendance because he was just never sick. Our whole family is like that, both his dad's and mine. And, no, there is no history of depression on either side of his family. And, no, he wasn't upset because he came from a divorced family. Actually he quite enjoyed it. He used to tell me how lucky he was, that he had 2 houses, 2 Christmas', 2 Easter's, 2 birthday's, and that he was an only child and that he liked getting all our attention. People were always amazed that the 3 of us would vacation together at the beach a couple of times each summer. Even tho Dennis and I were divorced we had a great relationship and it showed. We were meant to be friends and it worked out pretty wonderful for all of us. Brett was loved beyond belief and he knew it. That's the part that makes me happy every day, that Brett knew how much we loved him and worshiped the ground he walked on. He wrote about our love for him, and his love for us, in his last note to us. I will cherish it always.

More Great Pix of Brett

I love this pic of Brett. How handsome he was, with a beautiful heart, that came shining thru. He was so good looking, yet so humble. I remember saying to him one time, "How does it feel when I drop you off at school and all the kids come running, yelling "Brett's here, Brett's here!" He said "It feels pretty darn good!" Here he is teasing cousin Danielle in the phone booth in England. Poor girl, just trying to make a phone call home to mom and he's tap, tap, tapping on the booth the whole time and getting a huge kick out of it. I see this picture and I always think the same thing "That is SO Brett!" And, of course, I was as bad as he was. I always laughed at his jokes and egged him on. I thought he was hilarious. I miss his wonderul, quirky, right on sense of humor. I will never laugh like that again, ever.
Here's Danielle and Brett waiting for the plane. Danielle is the real heroine of the whole Salvia story. Without her coming to her mom and telling her that Brett was smoking Salvia we would never have been able to piece the story of his death together. I guess we would have figured it out eventually, with all his Salvia notes, and the many times we found Salvia and the police finding Salvia near him when he died. But she sped up the process and allowed me to have a dialog with Brett and what he felt about Salvia. I will always regret that I gave Brett too much credit for being so levelheaded and mature. I thought he would know enough to stop this garbage that would eventually lead to his downfall. When someone never makes you doubt them for a second, why would you start? When they came home every day, sober and together, why would you think something had taken ahold of them? This drug is so insidious. He is the first to be identified with it, but I'm sure he's probably not really the first, and definitely won't be the last. We were just lucky, we were able to put the puzzle pieces together. How many other families didn't have the information we did.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Brett's favorite place to be - LONDON

This was Brett's final trip abroad. His favorite cousin, Danielle accompanied us to visit his other English cousins. We had an incredible time and I was so glad the hounding by Brett and Danielle was finally over. No more "Please, please, please take us to England!" Never in my wildest dreams, or should I say nightmares, would I believe that my boy would be gone just 7 mos. later. Soon after this is when I got the call telling me he was smoking Salvia. Only 7 mos. to take one of the strongest people I've ever met down. Unfathomable to me.

Brett called this "Looking toward the future"

To Salvia Users

Just in case you're inclined-don't bother posting comments. I won't read them!! This blog is for those who loved and knew Brett, not the "posers" as Brett would call you, the ones who never had any contact with him or the ones who say "Oh, yeah, I worked with him, or I went to school with him, or I saw him walking down the street one day, etc, etc." Brett was so straight up, so darn forthright, so "tell it like it is". He'd hate the lies that have been written by him. Don't post anymore here. This blog is about TRUTH.

True Tales - The Life of Brett Chidester

Much has been made of the death of my beloved son, Brett Michael Chidester. I thought it about time that the world learn about his life. His real life, not the life that people who have never met him have invented on the internet. I made a pact with myself, after his sensationalized death, that I would try very hard never to read any of the postings on the net about him. I've been pretty darn good about it, but over time I've had well meaning friends ask me or tell me about certain things they've read. I don't stress over it because Brett's family, his friends and schoolmates, my friends, his dad's friends, knew the real Brett and knew what he was about. He was an inquisitive, fun loving, devoted son who made every day an adventure. The words "I'm bored" never emanated from his mouth, ever. He had the ability to turn the most mundane task into an adventure. His crazy sense of humor, his guileless wit, his love of laughter and life, will never, ever be forgotten by any of us. His was, and always will be, unforgettable.

This is my first blog, and believe me, Brett would be proud. He always tried to get me to come into the 21st century, kicking and screaming. So, this one's for you, Brett. I'm not a writer but I hope I can do you proud, my sweet, "stolen angel", taken from us who loved you much too early.

My hope and desire is to provide a place with pictures and videos of Brett, my recollections of his life and death, some of his writings, and for all to come to know the young man that touched and changed our lives irrevocably.