It's been five years since I've heard your laugh.
I think that is the hardest part.
That laugh was... original.
It wasn't a sound I thought about until it was gone.
5 years is a long time.
Lots of things change.
Life goes on.
However, I do not think a day passes where I don't have at least a moment that I think about you.
It may be brief, just a slight flutter in my brain.
Or a whole car ride home by myself.
I have come to the conclusion that you will never leave my mind.
I used to try and force you out.
Mad at myself when you entered.
Then I realized, ignoring those thoughts, was just a try at controlling an uncontrollable situation.
It's been five years and I believe I'm past the stages of grief.
Denial: When you first died, I was sure it was some kind of practical joke.
You'd show up any minute at the bar and say something stupid like "YAHTZEE!"
Anger: WHAT THE FUCK WERE YOU DOING!!!??? This one hit hard. I was already mad/disappointed you hadn't come to my 30th birthday party. You died when I was mad. Goes to show, you never know what might happen, never hold on to anger.
Bargaining: I begged you... BEGGED you to show up in my dreams. I said I would move on. I'd do good things, I'd be a better person... I just NEEDED to see you. I am not a religious person.... but I know I attempted to make deals (bargins) with God to just have you back....
Depression: I suffer this bitch anyway... but it was deep. I changed. I cancelled plans. I drank constantly. I disappeared into the grief and didn't want to come out. In the grief I was closer to you.
Acceptance: I know you are gone. I know I won't see you. I know you will always be apart of me though, because in your own fucked up way, you taught me so much about myself during the 7-8 years we were friends, roommates.
So here I am... 5 years later, remembering VIVIDLY the phone call telling me you had died.
I will never listen to certain songs again. (Dirt Road Anthem, Over You...)
I will never enjoy Southern Iowa, 4-wheeling or dive bars like I used to.
I will always miss you, that smile and that laugh.
I miss you and I always will.