it was nine days ago. how is that even possible? in so many ways it has been the longest nine days of my life. i say the same words over and over again: i am good at until laters, it is a skill that i have had to learn, but one that i hate that i have to have. i read the letters, the words, scribbled on pages over and over again and each time they make me cry. my heart longs for my bed in Kansas suite, with Beka less than a foot away, for walks to Raney, for yelling at Hazel across campus, for laughter, for that feeling that would overcome me every single time I walked into our suite, that feeling where all my guards came down because I knew i was home. My mom told me, she said “you will probably never have that sense of intimacy again, that closeness with such a large group of people”. she didn’t mean to be depressing and she wasn’t. she was just speaking the truth: Cottey was a once in a lifetime thing. It will forever and forever be special to me. What else is there to type? I keep seeing their faces everywhere even when I know it can’t be possible that they are here, in my city, in my first home. I saw Beka and Emilie and even people I never would have thought my mind would pull on, people who created the environment that I love so much. they are haunting me. my brain is playing tricks and it is hurting my heart.
Cottey sisters, if anyone of you is reading this, I know you know how i feel. I felt it in your arms as they pulled me into your own, as Katie, Amanda, Beka and I hugged before we left the chapel and right at the end of the daisy chain afterwards, as the four of us hugged and cried in Beka and I’s empty room, I heard it in your words, as Emilie spoke her heart and I cried, tears falling down my face. I felt it as your hand held mine, Sam. I heard it it your words, in the RWAC journal, in your letters, in the texts you wrote me and the notes in my planner, Hazel, i heard it it the catch of your voice as you attempted let the air in as you hugged me, Chloe. I know that you know how I feel but I can’t help but wanting to write over and over again, wanting to scream at the top of my lungs just how much you mean to me, how much i owe you, how much i love you just to be sure you know. I wish you were here, all of you, sitting on my bed, holding my hands. I have questions for you, things I can ask via the phone and via text but things I want to hear your voice respond to and watch as your face answers. how many more days until i see you all again? only the universe knows i suppose, which makes it all worse. i know that you know how i feel. my heart is too big for my chest. i miss you all. you feel that too, don’t you?