Many say it's a pivotal moment in your twenty-something life. It's a time where you begin to change and turn into the adult you are meant to be. Also known as...the quarter life crisis. As one who scoffs at the idea that your age and not your life experiences define your outlook on the world, I am now eating choking on my own words. I now know it's not one or the other. It's a combination.
As 2013 came to a close, I made a decision: I was leaving my job. But this wasn't just any job. This was my first out-of-college Big Girl Corporate Job a place where I came into my own as a writer/editor. However, my November/December was a whirlwind of being sick from stress. I was dealing with my ailing and now deceased mother, while trying to keep up with work I no longer had any Give A Fuck energy for. My mother was dying in the hospital, and I knew it. I could see the death in her eyes. A very familiar look. So, nothing else mattered and things began to fall into perfect perspective.
Mama passed away on December 31, 2013, bringing my year to a morbid yet symbolic end. I was closing a giant chapter in my life in 2013 and starting fresh, anew in 2014. I was leaping into 2014 with no mom, no job, and no man (LOL, JK. I didn't have that in 2013 either.).
For me, turning 25 now meant more to me than I ever thought it would. I now have to go forward in life with whatever wisdom my gracious mother instilled without being able to physically go to her for advice. I'm entering a place in my career where I'm more aware of what I want and what talents I have under my sleeve. And lastly, I now have a more understanding of what life is about.
What matters the most in life isn't necessarily the things you do, but who you do it with. The relationships you build, the connections with people you make, and the lives you touch define the legacy you will leave behind.
A week ago my world was turned upside down. A close friend of mine lost her life-long battle with Cystic Fibrosis. This friend of mine was not just any friend. She was one of my best friends at school, a future bridesmaid and well, my partner in crime. The one thing that college has taught me is that as quickly as you form friendships, those very same friendships can die just as quick and if not, faster. However, my friendship with Scarlett never died, and in fact, it grew rapidly.
Like any new relationship, when a bond is built instantly and blossoms into something neither of the parties can control, it’s frightening. This is what happened to us. No one wants to let someone into their life to see them for who they really are; especially me. Scarlett showed me that it was OK to let people into your life and love them unconditionally. We had only been friends for two years prior to her death, but it felt like we had known each other for eons.
I’m going to miss binging out on sweets in her dorm room and watching random poorly made movies that she received via Netflix. Or, our endless conversations that restricted me from actually doing my schoolwork, but I mean, it’s not like I actually wanted to study.
The pale-skinned, blue-eyed blondie was a bucket of sunshine that came with a loud mouth in a tiny package. Scarlett taught me how to live my life to the fullest by example because she did what she wanted and when she wanted within good reason. Each day at school is a struggle for me because I never went a day without seeing or talking to her whether I trekked up 3 flights of stairs to her room in our residence hall, or silly texts because we shared the same sense of humor.
So Scarlett, I’m tattooing your name across my heart, where it will remain, because not even death can make us part. I promise to live my life like you would have wanted me to: happy, healthy and humble. The point of this post is really to give me my last bit of closure because every now and then, sadness takes over but I'll be all right.