It has taken me four months to write this. Not for lack of trying, but out of a refusal to let the words come. They were still to painful to admit. The words are still painful, but they are finally ready to be said.
Every morning when I wake up, I am greeted by a wall of pictures. These pictures represent the best people and the best moments of my life. The pictures remind me that I have a full and beautiful life. But four months ago, that wall of pictures became a little less full when a dear friend of mine died in a tragic skiing accident. It breaks my heart to look at those pictures, but I can’t bear the thought of taking them down.
I am grasping at straws to hold on to what pieces I have left, because the thought that we will never make more memories together is unbearable.
Nothing can prepare you for the grief that death brings in its wake. The unanswered questions. The regret of words unsaid. The fleetingness of hope. The pain of loss.
It wasn’t just losing someone who was the very best of us. It wasn’t just losing a dear friend. It wasn’t just losing someone who had been so influential in my life during the most formational years. It was all three of those combined. That enormity of that loss crashes through you like a fucking freight train.
I think people come into our lives for a reason. A deeper reason than just our human need for relationship. People are sent in certain times of our lives to teach us and to inspire us. People are sent into our lives to show us there is someone in us worth believing in, and that we have a future that is worth fighting for.
Some people are meant to be in our lives for a long time, maybe even for our whole lives. I am blessed to have a large group of people who have been in my life for the long haul. There are always there in my corner pushing me forward.
There are others for that are only meant to be in our lives for just a moment. Those people should not be easily discounted. Sometimes they can be the most influential people we met. I can’t explain it, only that it seems that life only gives us a few moments together so we fill it like a lifetime.
The hard part is when that time expires. When we must say goodbye to someone who has taught us so much. When we must move on because life is moving on. When we must let someone out of our arms and they never return.
I have learned that no matter how hard a goodbyes can be, it is still better than never knowing that person.
To my dear friend Billy, saying goodbye to you has been the hardest part of my 27 years. It has been my immense pleasure to have spent so many of those 27 years as your friend. You were the first person who believed in me, and you were the first person who pushed me to chase my dreams. You were the wind in my sails. What a fierce and strong wind you were. I can say with full certainty that I would not have made it this far in life without your support. My life will forever be changed because you were in it.