I dread this day. There are several days out of the year that I wish I could avoid altogether. This one is the worst.
She was beautiful. She was so SO funny. Her laugh was contagious. She was the most trustworthy person I knew. Everyone that had the pleasure of meeting her knew that she was an amazing girl. Too good for this world.
From 9 years old, if you asked me who my best friend was, I can guarantee that the response you’d get was “Brittany Riley”. That girl and I were stuck together like glue from the time we met each other. She was my safe place, my confidant, my partner in crime, you name it. We were, as they say, thick as thieves. This stayed the same all the way through high school.
Of course, we’ve had our fair share of ups and downs, just as any other dynamic duo. But one thing was for sure, you couldn’t keep us apart for long. We always found our way back to each other, no matter what.
I remember when we were little bitty things, how we would cry when we were reunited with each other after a week or so apart. She was my soulmate. And now half of my soul is gone.
It’s been four years today since I lost her. When I got the news, it was like the world completely shattered around me. I dropped to the ground, I screamed, I begged for it not to be true. No. There’s no possible way. Not MY best friend. She can’t be gone. It literally felt like my soul was ripped from my body. I couldn’t think, I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t see straight…and there was nothing I could do to make this go away.
For the next few days, while others were out helping with getting her service together and making sure everything was going to be perfect, I was at home. Laying in my bed. Completely numb, empty. How I got through those days, I will never know. I was in my pajamas up until 5 minutes before the funeral. Any other funeral I’ve been to, I dressed myself up nice. This one was different. I didn’t have the will to live, much less get dressed. I wore jeans and a t shirt with my hair messy. When I look back now, I feel that maybe people thought that was disrespectful of me. In that moment, all I could think about was that I didn’t want to be going where I was going, and maybe if I didn’t dress for it it wouldn’t be real. I wish so badly that that were true.
For the next several months, I stayed in a daze of xanax and sleep. I became more depressed than I had ever been. I just didn’t, couldn’t understand why God would take her from me. I had already lost several close childhood friends to car accidents, now my VERY best friend in the world was gone. Who do I call? Who do I go to when I need a shoulder to cry on? Who would I sit on the front porch with and almost pass out from giggling so hard? My heart was permanently crushed into a million pieces, with no way of ever fixing it.
Over the last four years I’ve struggled. I’ve hurt. I’ve cried. I’ve named my daughter after her. I’ve pretended that it wasn’t true so that I didn’t have to think about it. Time hasn’t healed my pain at all. The only thing that makes it a little easier is that with each day that passes, I know that it means I’m one day closer to seeing my Brittany.