Bent Words

Bent Words

August 14, 2016

I want to see my friends, my beloved other family, but not like this. Not without you.

I want to go to feel free and unburdened, where I can leave discipline and decency behind, where I can unwind and refresh my soul.

But not without you.

I want to see their faces. Their unjudging, beautiful faces full of love and life.

But I don't want to see their faces missing you.

I don't want to talk about you in past tense tones or see only photos on the big screen, where you're smiling as though nothing were amiss. I don't want to see the shrine set up at the bar, where you once sat not more than a week or two ago.

I want to be back at my little piece of heaven without having to look up to heaven to see you.

I celebrated my graduation from Carroll with you. Packer victories and losses. Dice games and poker. Corn roasts and corn hole. I've crossed that bridge in summer and in fall, through ice and snow storms, just to be among friends, more times and I could ever count. When we have a moment to ourselves, this is where we go. You and Jo and several of the amazing people always surrounding you helped me in my darkest moments when I lost my apartment and all of my belongings to a fire. You were there to lift me up spiritually, hold me when I needed holding and make me laugh when I thought I had no reason to. You were my home when I didn't have one. My husband proposed to me here because he knew how much it would mean to me to be surrounded by my other family. It's where we fell in love and discussed all the things that mattered to us most because this is where I felt safe. Where I've always been loved and never judged, where I've always found peace and happiness, where I could walk through the door and always be greeted with smiles and hugs. All because of my amazing Nice Ash family. I'm going to miss you so entirely and so deeply, for life will never be the same without you, but I promise to do whatever I can to lift your family and friends up in love, laughter and prayer just as you have always done for me. Thank you all for letting me be a part of your lives and for sharing your lives with me. I love you all to the moon and back.

Written at 8:19 p.m.