One year ago (3/8/2010), My best friend passed away. That was one of the most difficult days of my life. It was hard to celebrate my engagement when she passed away. I have thought about her most of the week. I have skipped over videos to watch that I made for her funeral just because I didn't want to cry. I cried myself to sleep the night before and cried myself to sleep the night after. Jessica is always going to be in my heart.
I was having anxiety that night. We did a graveside memorial for Jessica with her family. I went to her mom's house right after work. I went down into Jessica's bedroom and laid on her bed. I said hey and took pictures of her room. Her family can go down and see it anytime but I can't see it everyday. Abbey, my favorite dog, came over and jumped on the bed and was so excited to see me. It had been a while that's for sure. I wondered if her dogs had missed her too.
There was a good amount of friends and family that came to support her and to remember her. We have all been hurt by the loss of her but we can all be there to lean on each other just like Jessica was there for us when we needed someone to lean on.
We all sang together, God Be With You Until We Meet Again. Then released some balloons. I had mine tied around my wrist because I was the picture taker and it just wasn't going to happen. Jessica's way of being stubborn ;) The last time we did it was for her birthday and all the balloons went into the tree. Not this time though.
We went around the whole circle and we all said what we love about Jessica. I had anxiety over this because I said sort of one simple thing and everyone had stories. I knew I loved Jessica for more than what I said and wish I could've said something cool. I know Jessica knows that. But I am always at a loss for words when put on the spot. That's why I enjoy writing. I can always erase what I said and no one else has to read it but me.
I said, "I loved that Jessica was always there for you. No matter what. Even though she was mad at you. Or even if you needed her at 3 in the morning."
I wanted to write a little bit more about why I love her.
I had been thinking recently that it was always meant to be that Jessica and I were going to meet at some point. That it was meant to happen. Even at the times that it wouldn't have happened. That's what I loved that it was destined that we were supposed to be best friends. We first met at a kid's psych ward. Yep, we were crazy... nope. We weren't "crazy" we just had depression issues. We both had attempted suicide. Even if we went through with it. Then we would've met in the "afterlife."
We were so much alike. I loved her crazy extensions that fell out of her hair the next day. She made me and another girl go down a level because we went out of our room to say hey to her. But she was worth it.
I found her on Myspace and kept through contact through that except she went to another program and didn't go straight home like I did.
The next time, the exact same DAY we both were sent to a wilderness program. Not the exact same one. But around the same time we were enrolled at West Ridge Academy. A therapeutic boarding school for troubled teens. I loved that we were attached at the hip most of the time we were there. We were in the same house. There was one girl there that was really rude to Jessica. And I stood up to this girl for Jess. Jess wasn't voted into blue shirt right before Christmas because this girl got everyone against her and that made me so mad. Jessica came and sit next to me after the voting and cried. She cried and cried and I was able to put my arm around her and be her friend for her when she needed one.
It was the times that when we both felt out of place, we both needed each other.
I love her spunk and her personality. She was always shy at first and then adapted you and felt comfortable around you only after a few hours and was able to joke and be so personable.
This girl and I went through a lot together the last 4 years. And I am so incredibly proud to say she was my best friend through everything. She was there through my pregnancy, the person that was there when I needed someone the most and she didn't bail out. We got into a "fight" and then we started contacting each other. She sent me an e-mail after she found my blog and it says,
"Hey Stef. I just read your blog and wanted to tell you how proud i am of you for making these changes in your life. I think back to the summer and when we were hanging out. We thought we were happy, but we were lying to ourselves. I look up to you so much and think your an amazing strong person. You are going through probably one of the hardest times you will ever go through. I just want you to know that you have my full support and if you ever need anything, i'm just a phone call away."
Gosh, dang it. I went through this entire blog without crying and now I am after reading that. From that e-mail you can see that's genuinely the type of person she was. She never judged you and supported you through everything.
I wish she was still here. I wish I didn't have to write this and say how much I miss her. I wish she would've known how many people loved her then maybe she'd still be here. Maybe she'd know. She amazes me and how many lives she has touched and impacted even her short time here. She would've been 19 this year... 19. At 19, I had a baby and got engaged. Jessica had so much going for her and would've been able to experience all these things. I wish she would've known that and what she was going to miss out on.
I love you, tootie fruitie. You're my wife. You're my best friend. Sometimes I feel really alone. Sometimes I feel like no one understands me and that you were the only one who did. It's not fair that you're gone. But I know it will only be a short time until I see you again. I miss you.
"There's only 5 minutes left of today. Which one year ago today, I would've told you could possibly be one of the worst days of my life. It was so good to see your family tonight. It reminded me of all the good times and how I wish you were there. I know you were there in spirit but I wish you were there in person. I wanted to hug you more and smile with you again and tell you I love often. I wish there was more that I could say. This first year without you hasn't been easy but you've been there every step of the way and that's all I could ask for in my best friend. ♥ Always being there even after "the end."