My aunt died. I’m sure there are a million other ways to kick off this post, but this is my current reality. It was sudden and unexpected, and I don’t know how else to grieve.
It still doesn’t feel real.
When I was little, you were the coolest person I knew. You worked at a radio station at one point. You got us bootleg copies of Selena and Backstreet Boys. We shared a love for SheDaisy (to this day I think they are still the only country band I have ever liked. I’m sorry).
You would come home for Christmas and show us pictures of you with all of these famous people. There was always a story.
I don’t recall ever seeing you without a smile on your face. You had a bigger than life personality. You always walked into a room like you owned it. And you always did.
The happiness in your voice when we would speak over the phone (for hours and hours…and hours) was palpable. But I really had to go. I couldn’t talk to you any longer because the kids, and life, and gosh I really hate talking on the phone. Canyoupleeeeasestoptalking? What I would give to have you talk my ear off one more time. And to get text messages showing pictures of your garden that I was too busy to reply to. But I was so proud of you for that garden. I wish I had told you that.
Do you forgive me?
I was with you when you passed. Yes, I finally made it through the windy Appalachian Mountains to visit you. I’m sorry I didn’t make it there sooner, or under better circumstances. I hope it still counts for something that I at least made it to say goodbye.
It’s still so surreal. And it’s hard. I want to throw things. I want to kick and scream and cry like a child until I get my way. I want you here.
Dad told you it was ok to go. You squeezed his hand and grandma’s, and you shed a tear as you left us. Your wonderful friend Wendy was there too. And there were so many others who wanted to be there. You weren’t alone. We wouldn’t let you go alone.
We all told you we love you.
That you will always be with us.
We will always remember you.
And then you were gone. Peacefully. Smile on your face.