Find myself baking a pair of pies because I didn't think through how putting them off till after I got back from dinner would adversely affect my sleep schedule. Midnight's rolled past, and I realized the date had rolled over as well. I can't pretend that I hadn't already been hyper aware of its looming, but part of me had been trying to ignore what it meant.
Typically I find myself waking up on this date contemplating taking up drinking temporarily and wishing to remember only the good stuff and not the phone calls. Even that wish makes it worse.
Time hasn't erased the pain of that day 8 years ago, but it has managed to take the edge off. It doesn't hurt to breathe, and most of the time people can't see how damaged I am. Most days I can wake up, find the good, be grateful to be alive, and make the best of what God's blessed me with, but today will hurt.
In a few minutes the second pie will be done, I'll clean up, and I'll get myself to bed. The problem will be waking up in a few hours and trying to face this day.
Most people (and God bless their good luck and healing) won't realize what today is. Most people won't realize 8 years ago today we lost a brilliant author, aspiring filmmaker, true romantic, poet, and my best friend. I still read your poetry and our emails and notes from time to time. In those moments you still seem close, and I wonder if I'll always remember your laugh.
Thank you for being the one man who saw the whole of me, and the one man who told me I was beautiful without ever being prompted. I am grateful for the memories I have, the stories, and for your faith in me. The next time I see you, I hope to have some great stories for you and to have proven you right about me.
I miss you, Zuni.
Ps. I wrote a children's book about an armadillo. Hoping to get it published sometime soon. I think you'd like it.
Pps. David and Kelsey got married. You'd have loved their wedding and reception. It was beautiful and hilarious and fun. We missed you.