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:: 2021 22 March :: 10.11 pm

It's a year today. It doesn't feel like you've been gone a whole year. You're still on my mind daily. You're still showing up when I sleep. I haven't seen your daughter. She'll be 7 next month. Jade says she still remembers me but I have my doubts. I think next time I see her, I'm going to show her some pictures of you and ask her if she remembers when we went to the dinosaur show or when you cooked the tortellini soup for us or how you called her Panda. When she's older I'm going to tell her that you loved her more than anything in this world and that you only ever wanted to tell her the truth and not blind her from the ugliness of the world. I'm hoping we can keep your soul alive, even though you're gone. This year has been hard.

I wonder how you would've handled the pandemic. It is so unfair that you were evicted before the moratorium. I would love to have heard your opinion on the election... on the insurrection... on the anti-maskers.

I wish I could've saved you... I tried so long.

It's been suggested that I should write to you. A long letter about why I stopped being there for you, about how much I love you. You're not here to read it but it wouldn't really be for you anyways, and possibly lessen my guilt? I don't have much faith. Letting go of you was one of the two biggest decisions I've made. Neither worked out for me.

Every time I hear Styx and System of a Down and Electric Six and Say Anything and Chromeo, I think of you. Every time I see Eric Andre and Batman and Bojack Horseman and Ghostbusters, I think of you. Every time I watch hockey. Every time I cut an onion (wrong). Every time I'm in Browne's Addition. Every time I write on my arm. Every time I eat at Hong Kong Express. Every time I drive past Donut Parade. Every time I think of Robin Williams or Elton John or Ed Sheeran. And I know when I go through Ellensburg on Wednesday, you'll be on my mind yet again.

Before I stopped seeing you, I didn't think of what things might be like without you here. I vaguely recall moments of thought around how horrible you treated your body and how that might be the cause of your early passing... But I never actually thought of what life would be like without you - not even when I intentionally stopped picking up the phone. It's hard to breathe some days, knowing you're never going to call me again. Besides James, you're the only one who ever really spoke to me on the phone, as opposed to conveying something quickly through text. Like you were actually interested in what I was saying. Like you wanted to hear me laugh at your bad jokes. You were the only person who ever actively asked me to hang out. Every now and then some people in my life will say we should do something - and we mutually agree - but with you, you asked me if I wanted to go grab dinner or come over or have you cook for me or take Miranda out somewhere. I know I should be a presence in her life, I know that's what you would've wanted... But it's hard. It's hard to look at her and think of you. That's selfish, I know. And I will be there for her, I will. But it will be difficult for a long time.

You always mattered to me and I know I could've shown that in clearer ways when you were still around. You never really see what you have with someone until they're gone. Cliche, sure.

...True though.

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