Hey :) I've been starting and stopping this letter for a few days now--I'm just not sure where to begin. In all honesty, I'm not sure there's much more to say beyond "I miss you more than I ever thought possible". Okay, in ALL honesty, I have a million more things to say--but they kind of pale in comparison to the i-miss-you-so-much-my-heart-hurts issue I have going on.
Ya know, the first year you were gone was hard because, well, you were gone. The second year was hard because I realized I had to get used to you being gone...but I just wasn't there yet. The third year was hard because I thought everyone was forgetting about you. I haven't decided yet where this year lies. I mean this year, I had to force myself to realize that "reality" doesn't involve a physical you anymore. I had to realize that this is normal. Life consists of memories of you. But what it doesn't consist of is the opportunity to create more memories with you. And yeah, this is something I've known for 4 years...but does one ever truly wish to believe it?
In my perfect world, there you'd be. Simple as that. But life's not perfect--that's something that everyone who had the pleasure of having you in their lives knows. If life was perfect, you would have been happy. If life was perfect, you would have wanted to be here still. Truth be told, if life was perfect there wouldn't be this gaping hole in my heart. But it's not a burden--I want you to know that. It's a blessing. Every part of my life that you touched--that you are still touching--is a blessing. If I could ask for one thing in this world, beyond bringing you back, it would be that you touch everything I touch. That you see everything I see. That you're a part of everything I am. That the happiness I have comes from the strength you give me. And luckily, I think I have that. You are a part of me. Everyday. In everything I do. Everywhere I go.
I feel like in the past, I focused too much on what I was missing and not enough on what you gave me and what I still have. I let my sorrow for life without you coat everything I did and everything I said. I was so sad that that's all I could talk about. It took months for me to stop crying myself to sleep. Heck, it took months for me to stop randomly bursting into tears at the smallest mention of something related to you. I missed you so much that I became a shell of who I used to be. I withdrew. I was sad. I cried. But mostly I just radiated this sadness to any and all in my life. Crazy right? But I missed you and I didn't know what else to do.
I do though. Now I know. And I've slowly been getting there...but I'm happy. I'm happy without you. Is that possible?? Not that I don't want you to be here but I've come to realize that you made your choice..but that doesn't change who you are and what you mean to me. You want me to be happy. You want all of us to be happy! That's the joy of you--if I put aside how much I missed you, I would have realized so much sooner how much you truly enjoyed life for most of the 20 years you were on this Earth. I still miss you like crazy. I still wish I could see you every day and I still wish I could hear your voice. But...I can be happy and miss you at the same time. And that's where I'm at. And that's where you helped me get.
So do I still wish this was a bad dream? Absolutely. Do I wish you were here, pulling pranks and getting in trouble? You bet. Do I wish I could call you and hug you and touch you anytime I want? More than anything. But am I okay with the fact that I'm not going to see you again until God decides to call me home? For the first time, I can honestly say yes. It's not my first choice (or second or third or...you get the idea) but am I okay with it? Because it's God's plan and because you are safe in God's arms, then yes, I'm okay with it. And it took me four years to figure that out but thanks to you--my best friend, my guardian angel--I think I figured it out right on time.
Thanks for being a part of my life, Phil, for however brief (20 years!) it was. Thank you for the strength you give me each and every day. Thank you for being a part of everything I do. Thank you for never forgetting about me and giving me the push I need every once in awhile. I'm never going to stop missing you. I'm never going to stop loving you. That i-miss-you-so-much-my-heart-hurts feeling will never go away--and neither will the hole that accompanies it. But that's okay because it's a part of who I am--a part of who you've helped make me.
I love you so much and I wish you were here to be a part of this awesome future ahead for all your friends and family. We miss you but we know you're looking down on each and every one of us. Don't ever leave (not that you would). I miss you more than you'll ever realize.
**Even the best fall down sometimes**