February 19, 2014 was just like any other day. I had taken care of kids, Shane had gone to work, I was hella pregnant and just trying to make it to bedtime before I snapped and listed a couple kids for sale. Then, around 7 that night, I received life altering news. Nothing felt real anymore...but it was very much real.
I didn't want to believe it. I couldn't make sense of the words. There was no way it was true. You weren't really gone...you couldn't be.
It was like someone took a baseball bat to my chest and knocked the wind out of me. I couldn't breathe. The room was spinning. I called my dad, he hadn't heard the news and I think he was in shock too.
You had left this earthly life for something far more beautiful. You were always the Ying to my Yang. You and I were so different, yet so alike. I was a little bit crazy, and you were a lot more logical. We were friends for a very long time and had made so many wonderful memories. Life happened, then marriage and kids, and we still remained close. When I needed you the most, you were there, in every single moment. Your friendship is more than just a friendship to me; it's a sisterhood. We may not have been related by blood, but, there was something eternal in our love for one another, and for that I am truly thankful.
High school would have been so dull without you there. We didn't always hang with the same crowds, but, that's because you were such a social butterfly. I was the shy reserved one where that was concerned, so I stuck to what I knew, and kept that group small. Everyone loved you. Teachers loved you. I loved you.
I still love you.
I had decided to use the middle name Grace for Caroline before you left. It was almost a given when you passed away that I would use your middle name to honor your memory. So, Caroline Candis will forever be a part of you.
One time, Connor walked into my bedroom and saw a picture of us together. He looked at me and said "that's baby Caroline grown up." I asked him to point out which he meant, fully expecting him to point at me, but he didn't. He pointed to you. I don't know why he said that, and I have no clue where it came from, but, it was something I won't forget.
Your memory is something I will cherish forever.
Wait for me on the other side. It brings me comfort knowing you are there waiting to show me the ropes when it's my time.
I have to admit that it's hard for me to continually get older and older knowing that you will forever stay 31. You cheeky little thing...you did that on purpose, didn't you? Couldn't handle the thought of getting old and gray like the rest of us...
You came to me in a dream shortly after your funeral. I wasn't there to say goodbye, and to this day it haunts me. You told me that you were okay, and happy, and then immense peace washed over me. Without speaking, you read my thoughts...that I had wanted nothing more than to be there with your family and all the people who knew and loved you as much as I do. You told me you understood and that it was the right choice to stay here in Utah. My high risk pregnancy made that journey impossible, and I knew staying behind was the right thing to do. I am not sure Caroline would have come out as healthy as she was had I put my already fragile body through that kind of emotional turmoil. I don't think I could have handled seeing your vessel of this mortal life lying in a coffin. It wouldn't seem natural...you have always been larger than life, full of personality and charm, and someone I will forever look up to. You are a real angel now. Perfectly fitting.
This one is for you Kim.
Until we meet again...friends to the end, and beyond.