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I never thought I would have to write this letter. I never thought I would wake up one morning with dozens of missed calls and texts from your parents. I never thought I would have to dress in all black and attend your funeral.
We always talked about the things we would do together. We were supposed to hike the Grand Canyon. We were supposed to go camping in the Rocky Mountains. We were supposed to get coffee every Tuesday at our favorite coffee shop. We were supposed to weather it all together. You were supposed to have kids, get married, and be the CEO of the company you always talked about starting.
The crazy thing is, I knew you weren't as happy as you pretended to be. I knew you felt empty. I didn't know you didn't want to fight anymore. You were never a burden. I knew what you were going through, but you promised me you wouldn't leave me alone. You told me you were going to be my friend forever. And, it's saddening to find out forever was so short.
I want you to know you had hundreds of people who wrote to you. Not one person had a single bad thing to say about you. Everyone said you were there for them. People said your existence made them happy—you pulled them out of their darkest places with your smile and how generous you were with your time for them. People prayed for you and your family. People miss you. I miss you.
I want you to know you got thousands of flowers and cards. It felt like a million people showed up for your calling hours and your funeral. There wasn't any room to walk around. All the seats and then some were taken. People brought pictures of you to share with your parents. We even held a candlelight vigil in your honor. You felt so alone all the time, but you weren't.
I want you to know you were loved by so many people. I would switch places with you in a millisecond. You deserved all the happiness in the world because you gave it to other people. You were so selfless. You would've given the shirt off of your back for anyone. You were there for people even if they weren't there for you. You made people laugh. You made people want to be around you. You were always smiling despite the pain you felt inside of you. You had a heart made of gold.
I want you to know I am sorry. I am sorry I couldn't be there for you in the ways you needed me to be. I am sorry I didn't return your texts. I am sorry I didn't reach out sooner. I am sorry I am selfish and wish you were still here. I am sorry I missed our coffee date because I had to work. I am sorry you felt all this pain within your golden heart. I am sorry I couldn't take away that pain. I would do anything to have you back. I would do anything to have you singing at the top of your lungs in the front seat of my car. I wish I could hear the terrible jokes that you so clearly got from a Laffy Taffy wrapper. I wish I could hold you again. I want to feel your heartbeat again. I would sell all of my belongings to talk you out of killing yourself. I am so lost without you.
I wish I could tell you it gets better. I promise you, you were never alone. You were so entirely loved by the people around you. You didn't deserve the demons you had. I wish you could've killed the pain and not yourself. I wish I could tell you your life plan; maybe then you would still be here. I wish you could feel the love I have for you. I wish I could've been you. I wish I could've saved you. I am sorry I couldn't.
I wish you found your peace. You are free from all your pain. May your sweet soul rest. You will never leave my heart.
If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, please seek help. Call the Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. You are loved. You will be missed so much. You are golden. You are important. Please don't take your life. I need you. The world needs you.