There is a unique pain reserved for telling someone a loved one has died. A loved one does not have to be an intimate relationship or a family member. There are many different ways to love a person. I loved my friend Brittney, because she brought out the best in the world.
While standing outside my house, clutching my phone, I etched a scar deep inside of me. I knew I had to press the call button. It had to be me. I would regret it if it wasn't me. Nothing seemed scarier than that button, not even the loss I had already experienced. I knew my pain, but now I had to transfer it to someone else I cared about.
When the call was finally made, it started off normal, almost casual. A call from a friend is received happy, but I could not match her tone. Even though cancer was now always hidden underneath our conversations, she couldn't bring herself to understand. This is not the kind of news one wants to understand.
It all feels the same; a sharp numbness like your body is made out of icicles. When she finally understood, there was silence, and then cries that echoed louder than my own tormented blood. Both outcomes will shatter you, and the ice turns to shards of glass scattered across the floor boards. The pieces fall between the cracks before you can reach towards them.
Even though it feels like there is nothing left inside of you, your heart survives. Your heart holds on to the love your current pain tries to destroy. With time, the pain subsides, and all that is left is the love you shared.
Today is your birthday, Brittney. You would have been turning 23 with me this year. It has been almost four years, but that October 3rd will always feel like yesterday.