It has taken me a year to start writing this and I don’t know why. Maybe writing this and seeing it in black and white will somehow make me accept that you are gone and never coming back. I am so angry and I don’t know what or who I am angry with because it is kind of pointless to be angry at someone who can’t and won’t ever be able to defend themselves.
I keep replaying conversations between you and I right before you left this world. What did I miss? Why didn’t I realize something wasn’t right and listen to my gut? Why couldn’t you just reach out to me, like you always did, when you were spiraling out of control? You know damn well I would have been wherever you needed me to be in a heartbeat because I always have been and vice-versa.
From the moment I met you over a decade ago, you had my heart. Yes, we dated first but first and foremost, we were best friends before and after our relationship. We saw each other through some of the worst and best times of our lives and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. When I found out you were gone and I was never going to hear your voice or see your bright, beautiful blue eyes again, I realized my life was never going to be the same without you.
You taught me what friendship was supposed to be and not what I had concocted in my twisted brain. You were one of my biggest cheerleaders and always one of the first to tell me how proud you were of me. I wish I told you how proud of you I was more than I did. I honestly just never thought this day would come. How naïve of me to think that way.
Since the day I met you, there was a demon you had been battling day in and day out and despite the outcome, you put up one hell of a fight my friend. But in the end, what caused you so much pain, agony and despair was the thing that killed you. Your fight against heroin is admirable and it took every ounce of strength and courage you had, even when you couldn’t find it. I can only hope that you are at peace now, but you will be missed every single day and you were always loved by me.
I am so grateful to have had you in my life for as long as I did. At times, you really were my rock when I was unable to stand on my own. You gave me courage and strength when I was heading down a dark and dangerous path. I wish I could have done the same for you. You are NOT going to be just another statistic in the opioid epidemic. Your passing will be more than a number, I am giving you my word on that. Have I ever broken any promises I made? You know I take promises very seriously and when someone breaks a promise, it speaks volumes.
The opioid epidemic had officially crossed my path on a personal level the day you went away. I can only hope to have half of the strength you had during your fight and hopefully save a life. You know me, I want to save the world but I know that I can’t. But if one person can be spared the vicious and destructive path of addiction by mine and others advocacy and voices, I am okay with that. But I won’t stop there.
You and your life experiences WILL NOT be just a number that people use in research papers with no solutions or plan of action to attack this opioid epidemic straight on. I promise you that. I will miss you every day and I hope you know how much I loved you and cared about you. Be in peace, now.