I am writing a letter to someone who has passed on from me. This post is written to my friend Matt Miller who left life very soon and very young.
It was a bright sunny Saturday. I had no reason to be sad. My mom called, a pleasant surprise. But what she had to say, I didn’t want to hear. What she told me knocked me down to the ground. No, not you. No, that’s not right. It can’t be. No.
I spent the next few days thinking. About our friendship. About how you were always there for me. My physical memories were from a time too far ago. It had been too many years since I had seen you in person, felt your embrace, lost my breath as you squeezed me into a massive bear hug. But my virtual memories were so near. 24 hours before, we talked. We shared words over the internet, virtual hugs and congrats; deep thoughts and funny sarcasm. My virtual world is not the same without you.
We traveled down 3 hours to see you. All I could think about was the last time I made this trip. You called, being the voice of God, leading me towards the light in Tuscaloosa . We didn’t get together that trip, life was too busy. We promised to get together next time. I guess next time will be in heaven. I waited in line to see you. I bounced a baby on one arm and watched my other baby run, dance, smile and laugh. She entertained for you. I cried again. They will never meet you. So many people, waiting hours to say goodbye. So many broken hearts. But they wouldn’t let us cry. No, we must be happy for you, why is it so hard sometimes?
You looked so peaceful. I wanted a hug. I needed a hug. I had my husband, my babies, my parents, your mom, your dad, your brothers, and your friends. We all hugged for you.
I broke down in the car. A 2-year old shouldn’t have to see that, but then a 25-year old shouldn’t have to leave so soon, so unexpectedly.
I sang for you. It wasn’t that good, too many tears. But I sang for you. I smiled remembering the times we stood in the same space. The jokes you cracked to make a long, hard practice seem so fun. I laughed with the stories that were shared. I cried because you loved so well. Everyone spoke about how the ‘common bond’ was Alabama , love of sports and such. Haha, nope not us. That was a source of constant jokes and insulting. What we had went deeper than a sports team, or a college. Now, that once hated squiggly A can move me to tears.
Why did everyone tell me how much you loved me? I know that, I always have. I hope it’s the other way around too. I hope you knew how much I loved you. I fear I never said it enough.
Now, your words are taped on my fridge. Your memories always on my heart. Your family in my prayers. I cry in the dark. I turn the light off so no one sees my tears. I don’t want to make anyone nervous. I'm not sure how to grieve. We are too young to know how to comfort, or do you really every learn. I know you’re having a grand ole time in heaven. I know that, but I miss you here. Its not fair, and I don’t think it will ever be.
But I live with your influence in my life. Not only do I live for myself, my husband, my children. I now live for you, too. You have impacted my life, and I live to carry on your memory and your cause.
I love you.