I don’t even know where to start with you…. it’s seems like we were together for such a short time. But in that short time, you managed to teach me so much about myself. You taught me things I didn’t want to learn… things I didn’t even know I needed to learn. And I never appreciated it. I actually was counting down the days hoping and dreaming for the moment when you would come to an end…. So I could finally be free. But on the eve of your passing, I feel like I should take this time to reflect.
I owe that much to you.
When we first started, I was pretty sure I had life all figured out. It was the summer time, when the weather was hot and sticky but also intoxicating and intriguing. Well at least it should have been for me. But when we first got together I was in such a low place that I was waiting on you just so I could have a genuine reason to smile at the thought of myself.
Man… we started off strong didn’t we? Thought we could take over the world, and for just a few days I was sure I could do anything with you. I held onto you, ecstatic that I could add you to my identity’s resume. Another bullet to show I was worth something… that I had accomplished at least one thing good in my life.
But somewhere along the way we got lost. I had dug this whole for myself in just a few short weeks, and the whole time you were standing at the top peering over, trying to remind me of my youth. But I ignored you. I pulled the covers over my head, closed my curtains, and blocked out any thought of you. I began to cheat on you with my 40s and 50s. My despair made me feel so much older, I forgot about that fiery romance we had. The one that lasted for such a short time. I couldn’t admit that I missed that feeling of youth, of being carefree. It was much easier to build bonds with the older, heavier, much more depressing ages. I forgot to let you bring me back up to the surface.
And although I was lost for a while, you still stayed by my side. Something told you I would wake up and remember what you meant to me. That I would open my eyes and see myself as this beautiful young girl with the whole world ahead of her…. just like you saw me everyday. And I’m sorry that day came at these moments. The moments when I will soon have to say goodbye to you. But I’m hoping you still have a kind ear to listen anyways.
Being with you…being 20…was one of the hardest years of my life. I was very close to missing out on seeing 22, 23, or even those 40s and 50s I had been dealing with. Somehow I had become content with you being my boundary…. my barbed wire fence. But suddenly it all became clear…. a bit late but eventually it did.
I realized that I had something great in you. I had a future. I had energy. I had hope.
And even though it felt like I had no reason to wake up in the morning, I found it in myself to finally see you.
I love you…. 20.
And although we only have a few hours left together, I appreciate all you’ve taught me. All those things I didn’t want to learn…. and didn’t think I needed.
So I thank you…. for always being there. For pushing me to make mistakes, for making me laugh when it all got to be too much, for pouring just one more drink when I had already had too many, for making me flirtatious…. for making me be myself.
You will soon be gone… but you will never be forgotten.