I Send You Letters Anyway

Today’s the kind of anniversary you don’t really want to remember. The kind you wish could be erased from the calendar all together. But even if you don’t write it down, you’ll still remember it when it comes. And even though it’s been three years, you’ll still miss them as if it were yesterday.

On January 5th, 2012- three years ago today- I lost a friend. Her name was Katie, and she was one of the best people I’ve ever met. The time I spent with her was far too short, but I’ll always remember the moments we shared. From long coffee dates that could’ve easily gone on for hours if she didn’t have to leave for work, to Black Friday shopping, arms linked and weaving through the massive crowds, to shopping and filling stockings for children in need. There was the time she and my brother came up for dinner which consisted of steaks bigger than our faces- which had us all laughing as we tried to eat as much as we could. Or the time she texted me asking if she could come up to the house so we could figure out our Christmas charity we wanted to do together, and she showed up as I was knee deep in Christmas decorations, trying to assemble a plastic toy train set for around the tree that literally gave me grief every. single. year. We laughed so hard as I ended up breaking one of the track pieces in an attempt to make two pieces fit that clearly didn’t. She sat down with me on the floor and helped me finish putting it together. She laughed saying she was definitely not the best person to help, but considering that I had already broken one, I knew she couldn’t do more damage than me:) I haven’t brought out that train set since, and I probably never will.

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She took beautiful photographs, and had her own photography business. She asked if she could use my house and fireplace for the backdrop of pictures of my niece she was going to do as a Christmas present for my mom. She had picked up the cutest little dress, curled my niece’s hair, and set up all her equipment in my living room. The pictures turned out so lovely. I remember when I told her, “Sheesh, you are a professional!” She replied with a smile, “I like to think of myself as an extreme hobbyist.”


Then there were the plans we made, that could never happen. The bridal fair she was going to take me to. It was marked in both our planners. I don’t think she knew it, but I was going to ask her to be my fifth bridesmaid. I ended up only having four.

Katie, you had such an impact on me. Someone who didn’t know you for nearly long enough. It just makes me think how much of an impact you had on SO many people. And I ache thinking about those you were closest with having to lose you- it was hard for me-  I can’t even imagine how hard it was for them. I am just thankful to have known you. We will see you again, lovely girl:)


I mentioned awhile ago, that we’ve let balloons go as a way of coping and showing love. It really helps. I think the Tiny Book of Tiny Stories explains it best, with this:


It’s a really easy thing to do. Just buy some balloons and take them to the place where you want to let them go- anywhere outdoors will work. Use a sharpie to write a letter or a note on the balloon. Say whatever’s on your mind- whatever you want to let the person know. Then you simply let the balloon go and watch it until it disappears. I did this already this year for Katie, and I could not have asked for a more beautiful day. I got some balloons, a coffee, and went up to one of my favorite views in town to send my balloon-letters.

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 Miss you forever, my dear.


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