Saturday, January 31, 2015

My Friend Is Gone

I've been trying to organize my thoughts and feelings but I think I need to just get them out instead so forgive what is sure to be very disjointed.

I lost my friend Dawnelle this week. It was sudden and unexpected and I can't get over how unfair it is. One minute she was here, the next she was gone. She was 43 and had a teenage daughter. She was finally happy after years of being in an unhappy marriage. She found love. She found happiness within herself. She lived life like it could end at any moment without ever knowing that it would. End. Just like that.

She was a good friend in the way you know that people are really good friends because you can go months with being so busy in your own life but when you need them or just want to see them, they are there. They make the time and they listen and it's like you just saw them the day before. She was the friend that I knew I would see again, even after moving across the country. I knew that she would visit or I would visit, that our paths would cross and that our last "goodbye" was just "see you later."

Except it wasn't.

And I can't wrap my brain around the fact that she's gone. I feel guilty for feeling happy in my own life. Because how could this beautiful life be extinguished, leaving a young girl behind without the person who loved her most in the world while mine continues? How is that I get to complain about not losing enough weight or sighing over the dogs peeing on the floor yet again or whine that my back hurts because I worked out? This wonderful human being is gone and her young daughter's life will never be the same. It won't be what it was supposed to be. That doesn't mean it can't be good and she's strong enough to make it because she is her mother's daughter but it shouldn't be that way.

People say, "She would want you to be happy." And of course she would. I know that. I would tell someone else the same thing. My guilt and my sadness don't change the fact that she's gone. Still. I wish I could do something.

In the end, I think, that all we have is the love in our lives. I am lucky to have known her and I am grateful for her friendship. I got to hear her story and witness her courage. I got to be a part of her journey. I got that privilege. And really, isn't that what life is? It's a privilege. To be loved, to care for others, to laugh and cry and feel joy and pain. If there has to be a lesson from something that makes no sense, I will have to satisfy myself with that.

It's not fair and life is cruel but I have to choose to take heart in the knowledge that my friend was loved and she knew joy and she knew strength and she loved with the fierceness that I know and feel as a mother.

It's the only thing I can do.


Corinne Anderson said...

<3 ((hugs))

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