four years is enough time to go through high school. enough time to graduate from college. enough time for some to get married, have babies, and/or get a divorce (sadly). enough time to heal, but also short enough that when I allow myself to think about her too much, the feelings are still raw.
It’s hard for me to remember what it felt like to be around her. I think that is what hurts the most about the amount of time that has passed. I remember being in just about a constant state of laughter and silliness around her. I remember feeling like she was one of the main people in this world who really knew me, and I think the feeling was mutual. I remember getting agitated by her when we both were being stubborn and wanting our way/wanting to prove we were right. I remember thinking, seriously, that I don’t know what I would do without her in my life.
Life truly has never been the same since she passed. I wish I could say that because of her, I am more outgoing, I make the most of every day I am given, and I love life to the extreme. However, if I am being honest, I haven’t done a very good job of those things I vowed to do in her honor. In her eulogy, her dad asked that we all take a part of her that we loved and make that part of us. I told myself what I loved most about her was her ability to connect with just about every person she encountered. I have to admit, I am not good at doing this. It is something I know I must strive to do– I just wish she was around to show me how to do it.
I keep thinking of my goal to honor her in a new way. I remember when she first passed, we discussed creating an “Anything but Clothes” 5k in her honor (hey– grace never wanted to do things the “normal” way!). I also thought about raising funds from our graduating class to contribute something to our high school in her memory. I think at the very least I need to contribute to her scholarship fund. But I think the best thing we have done in her memory is that we have maintained our friendships and vowed to stay in each others’ lives. I know that she would have wanted to see that happen.
I still think of her every day. I still think about what she would be doing with her life, where she would be, whom she would love. I still think about memories we could have made together, and I still reminisce about the plethora of good ones we were actually able to make. She remains a part of me, even if I have not done a very good job of living and viewing life the way that she did. My heart still breaks after four years, but it also remains confident that she is with me/us in so many ways in our lives. I miss you and love you, girl. Rest easy.