I’ll be honest, I have been having serious writers block. I Googled around (have to love good ole’ trusty Google). I found a ’30 Day Letter Challenge’ to be honest it was the first of the many challenges that I read that instantly sparked my interest.
Well, today marks Challenge Number 1: Write a letter to your Best Friend.
February 1, 2017
Unfortunately, I am aware that you are no longer here to physically hand this letter to. Saying that sentence alone in my head and out loud brings tears to my eyes.
However, let me begin that those tears used to be sad ones. Nine years ago I would cry horrible, sad, tears. Tears, that I would spend sitting at the beach alone in my car crying, late at night. Tears, I would drop listening to certain songs or hearing certain shows/movies. Tears, I would let pour down my eyes while being a new mother wanting to call the one person who understood me in this life – you.
I would stare at your picture for hours asking, why? Why you? Why such a simple, calming, loving soul. A woman who was full of potential in so many ways. A woman who was on her way and we all knew would go somewhere in life. Why? I screamed this day in and day out. Nobody even knew most of the time and well I didn’t need to let anybody know – they just wouldn’t understand my feelings.
Showers were my best friends. A locked bathroom that I was able to stay alone in and let the tears flow out of my eyes.
My thoughts of you were mine and I wanted to cherish every one that I have made with you.
When I think of a ‘Best Friend’, thoughts of you flood my mind. Constant tsunami floods. My head becomes full of nonstop, beautiful memories that we shared amongst one another. You were always a genuine friend. A woman who was always full of a chinky eyed smile. You’re laughter lit up a room and your calming demeanor made anybody feel comfortable in your presence. You always lent a helping hand. Quick to help and rarely to ever ask in return. A huge heart made of gold. I am not simply saying that statement, I mean it with all of the power within me to say. Your heart was made of gold and had a steel fence built around it. A heart I look back and wish I had at such a young age.
I can sit here and preach all of this to you. I can talk for hours and type words upon words. My word count would probably go so high I’d get cut off.
Truth be told, I was selfish Avi. I was so damn selfish. Every bone in my body makes me ache when I think of this. I wish I were a better friend at the time. I wish I were that calming, beautiful, soul that you always were to me, and those around you.
I know, I wasn’t bad. I know that. I know you are probably looking at me ready to smack me if you physically could. We were 18, just out of High School. Young, dumb, and well, vulnerable. Not aware of the reality of life. I know you love me and I know I love you. I continue too. However, growing up made me look back and realize how damn selfish I was. I didn’t want to grasp the thought that you were sick. I wasn’t aware that you no longer being here was a reality. I didn’t realize the reality of what was being thrown in my face. The reality thrown to those who love you and well a reality you couldn’t run away from.
Due to that, I sucked as a Best Friend. Seeing you was important but going out and being an 18-year old and drowning my feelings in alcohol were more important. I am so very sorry. So sorry I didn’t sit and knit with you as you were trying to pick up as a hobby. I’m sorry I didn’t fall to sleep next to you and watch movies – just because. I am so sorry that I didn’t spend every second you needed me with you. I couldn’t say sorry enough and well, I don’t think sorry will ever be enough.
Lets start back in 2007-2008. That call, that damn call. I was driving around bored. I had just purchased the new Keyshia Cole album on my way home from class at Suffolk and Heaven Sent was blasting through the speakers. I turned it down and I answered. You seemed off, very, very off. Yet, you still acted normal asking how Southampton was, my relationship, life. I answered but eventually, I got it out of you. Those tears, tears you never cried to me. Tears and the honest truth out of your mouth, “they found cancer.” I had to park the car with my thoughts and feelings I was having. I cried with you.
Over the course of those months it was scary and well fast. That wasn’t fair to anybody that loved you. Coma, loss, and your damn tough ass, that tough behind of yours! The one thing that I was always envious of in a beautiful way. How tough and happy you always remained – through it all. Nothing ever bothered you. You just smiled and embraced life with a hug. You prayed with your family. You played with your baby cousin. Your smile lite up the room every time one of us came to visit. You made the sickness look so easy. As if you weren’t even sick. I envied that tough side of you.
I visited, I loved, I worried, I prayed for my Best Friend. Yet, I lost you. I didn’t read in-between the lines when you calmly told me, “I am moving to New York”.
At 18, I thought everything was better. You’d get better. We’d be riding around town, laughing, hanging out like the old days.
Sometimes I want to be upset that you didn’t just throw the truth in my face but realistically, I thank you for protecting me. I know you well enough to know you not being direct is what made you calm and happy. You made sure no matter how selfish I was that I was always present through the journey. You protected me in a weird Best Friend way. To the point I beat myself up as a Best Friend but looking back you did it for a reason.
Avi, I hope you are looking down knowing how much you have played a positive role in my life. I will always cherish you close to my heart. Your pictures will always remain within the frames in my home. Memories, cards, notebooks, you name it; they will always remain close to me. I bring your legacy as my Best Friend into the mind of my daughter. If I mention Avi, Ahmyri knows exactly who you are and the role you play in my life.
I love you my Angel. I wish I didn’t have to write a letter to speak to you. I wish I could hug you tight and rewind time. Unfortunately, life doesn’t always go our way. However, I know the years I had with you were the best.
For that, thank you for choosing me as one of your closest friends. Thank you for loving me all of those years. Thank you for everything. I will always love you my pretty, pretty love.