It’s funny because I can go days, weeks, even months without thinking about you. Then there are days like today, when I long for you, and I miss you with every fiber of my soul. Ironic really, since today marks four years since I got married. It’s been so long that to the outside world it would seem strange. Even before you left this world, I hadn’t seen you in years. Your yearly trips ended long before we had gotten to the age where we could truly appreciate one another. I know that despite the distance, you wondered, just like I did, wondered about all of the what ifs. I didn’t learn until after it was too late what predicament you were in, living life in a vicious cycle that was quickly eating away at your being, one that eventually consumed you and took you from this cruel world.

Omnia causa fiunt. I genuinely believe that…so much so that its inked on me forever. But despite that closely held belief, despite knowing that things happened the way they were meant to, it doesn’t stop my mind from wandering to possibilities that never were and will never be. Is it possible to be in love with two people at the same time? I think it is. Is it wrong? Normally, I’d say yes. But what about when the possibility for any relationship, any infidelity, is completely off the table? You can’t cheat on your husband with a dead guy. Yet for some reason, here you are, at the forefront of my mind, flooding me with memories.

I remember how you laughed as you threw your body forward. I had noticed the lines on your eyes. You had streaks of meteor shower painted on your face — that was common for us, laying out on driveway or roof on those rare summer nights when the newscasters announced meteor showers visible to the naked eye. You had this smile…one that radiated warmth into every facet of me and that is still hooked to every single memory I have of you. In those moments, twilight illuminated you, and I was lost in a daze next to you.

Somehow, the echoes of your voice from those hot summer nights resonate around me. Once a year we would watch the fireworks being blasted off into palettes of rainbow in the night sky. The late night breeze would ruffle your wavy hair, blowing your musky cologne toward me, making me notice just how gorgeous you were and how much I wanted to grow up with you.

You never knew how delicate I thought you were. Knowing your past, the rough upbringing that should never be bestowed on a child, made me tread lightly around you. You were bright and cheerful, like a whimsical flower, yet deep down in the roots, beneath layers of rock and sand, there were always buried secrets, always the fragility that made you break down at night. I knew bleeding wounds existed on your heart, that you suffered pain that reminded you of every mistake you’d ever made.

There is a song, and when I hear it, I hear your voice.

So maybe I took a little too much
Maybe life didn’t want this part of me
If it helps to know, I never let you go
Sure, I lost my mind
But I never really meant to die.

You should know that in moments like these, I’d give up my universe to see your gentle smile again.