subject line: what i won't be posting to social media on February 8th


in the shadow of our mountain

Hey you,

I’ve been counting down to this day for a month. That’s weird, isn’t it? Counting down to the anniversary of one of the worst days of my life - that’s weird. I told myself it was because I was worried I’d forget it. As if. Then I told myself it was because I wanted to write something for you again, so I had to set a deadline. Nonsense. I’ve been counting down because that’s what I do when I can’t control something - I count. Blame it on being an accountant’s daughter.

I’m counting because I can’t control that it’s been a year. I can’t control the past, the present, or the future - but I find myself wishing I could, so I could change it all - I’d go back to that day at Rosie’s and do everything different. I’d hug you longer. I’d go back two summers, and I’d sing louder with you and the radio at 2am at the lake. I’d have laughed more, I’d have told you more, I’d have loved you harder. I’d have not given you up so easily. I’d go back to last February 8th and warn you. I’d say “Something’s wrong, go to the hospital.” - I would have shown up at your door like Wonder Woman and taken you there myself. If I could’ve, I would’ve saved your life.

I can’t control how much it still hurts that you’re gone. I can’t seem to let go of all the guilt I feel about how things went down at Rosie’s or at Applebee’s, or at the house that summer, or... or... or... I can’t control how many or’s I’ve come up with. I can’t control how much I still replay it all in my mind. How much I still want to write it differently. And I can’t control the fact that here comes another year without you. I can’t stop it. It’s coming. It starts today. God help me.

I promised I would write our story one day. Maybe that day is today - because that is something I can control.