I wrote you on your birthday. To tell you how much I miss you. To remind you that even though we’re not together anymore, I’ll always wish you well. I’ll always hope you’re happy wherever you are. I’ll always wish I could celebrate with you again.
Birthdays had always been our favorite. The silly games we would play together and lighthearted activities and adventures we would go on, just to keep ourselves feeling young. Our love grew in those moments. Those moments were the ones I value the most.
Another year passed and again, I wrote you on your birthday. I wanted you to know that your absence from my life has created a partial void that has been impossible to fill. No matter how hard I’ve tried, no matter how many steps I’ve taken to put the memories aside. Everything I do and everywhere I look reminds me of you, and some days, it’s too difficult. It’s difficult because although those memories are beautiful, they can sting because they remind me of how happy we were together in those times. They remind me of how much you fulfilled me. But they also remind me that we’re no longer together.
I wish I told you more on the day you left. How I couldn’t imagine this life without you by my side. We had so many plans for our future together, we had spent so much time laying it out. I wish I told you how much I loved you. I know you knew… but I still wish I said it. I didn’t really believe that it could be the last day I talked to you.
So I write you because it’s the next best thing to looking in your eyes, being in your arms, hearing you tell me you love me, and listening to your comforting voice and contagious laugh. Sometimes when I’m surrounded by people, I swear I can still hear it. You always had that laugh…even at the end.
The diagnosis came out of the blue and put us both in a state of shock. To hear a doctor say, “cancer… stage four… maybe six months.” We weren’t prepared. To hand out a terminal diagnosis after running tests for weeks in such a matter of fact manner is something you can’t ever truly be prepared for. If only we had known sooner, but you never wanted the bother of getting annual checkups, and you never complained when you were feeling ill. You hid and ignored your pain, hoping that it would go away, hoping that your positivity could somehow erase all of it. I wish I knew how much you were suffering in those months, I wish you didn’t feel that you would be burdening me with the information.
I’m most thankful I was able to be there during that time, that we used it as an opportunity to check off some things we had planned for our future. Thankful I could be with you to the end, that I could hold your hand and see you go is a powerful memory that will always resonate with me. We had incredible moments together, the greatest love I’ve known, and I will forever cherish that.
Four years since you’ve been gone, and although it took a long time, I finally moved on, but a part of you will be with me every day.
Your birthday just passed and I wanted to write. I even started to, but then I stopped. Because although it felt like it in the beginning, life didn’t actually stop when you left, it went on. I’ve grown and learned so much in the past few years, and I did it on my own. So I’ll continue living my life the way you taught me to, full of love and purpose. And your birthday will just become another day that makes me smile.