Thursday, March 8, 2007

Dear Sherri

Dear Sherri,

I can't believe that we met while we were in the 7th grade. You were kind of a nerdy girl, with your Coke bottle thick glasses. It didn't take long before we were always together. Do you remember how short you were? I wasn't what you could call tall, but I still towered over you. It seemed like the boys that you liked always liked me. I'm sorry about that, but if it is any consolation, I didn't like them anyway and tried to get you to be more social so you could expand your horizons and meet someone nice. Do you remember how we used to go to your house after school and watch "Dance Party USA?" We knew all of the people on that show. They were real, like us, zits and all. We used to go skating alot, that was fun. Remember how I was trying to learn to skate backwards and fell over something and broke my wrist? That sucked. I bet you don't remember how every time we went to the mall, you had to stop and eat at McDonald's. Well, after junior high came high school, a time that was traumatic for everyone. You had a new neighbor, a guy that became your boyfriend. I thought he was an asshole, sorry about that. When you were with him, you smoked, drank and had sex. It made me think he controlled you because you couldn't do anything without asking him. I can't say I was jealous because it was apparent that he was not a nice guy. I could tell when he scrawled "BITCH" on my locker. I thought he was a short, zitty little f***er and his face really hurt my hand when I had to hit him, sorry about that too, but it was hit or be hit and I never took his shit. We stopped being friends and when you broke up with him you would call me to talk. I always listened but never forgave him. I married and moved away and we had little contact, and I am sorry about that. Sometimes you called, sometimes I called but things had changed. Now, we are approaching our 20 year reunion! I have mixed feelings about going, of course. Am I too fat, too gray, too uneducated for these people we used to call our friends? Will Laurie Milazzo acknowledge me or be a snobby bitch, like she used to be? I don't know, I guess I will see when the reunion comes around. What I really want to say is how much I loved you, like a sister, and think about you all the time. I want to say I'm sorry for so many things. Even though I hated your boyfriend, I didn't hate you. Even though we both made mistakes, I never forgot you. What I wouldn't give to see you at the reunion. But I can't. Sherri, why did you have to die at 25? Why did breast cancer have to ravage your already tiny body and leave a grieving husband, family and friend? Why? I can't help but feel guilty that I missed so many things, so many opportunities to make amends with you. I just wasn't a big enough person, I guess, and I'm sorry. I am so sorry. I pray that when I get to Heaven that I will once again be your friend. Until then, I will still think about you and never stop.


This was a very hard post for me. As I sit here, in tears, I am reminded of Mitch Albom's book, "For One More Day." It is a great story and I had the privilege of hearing him read a selection when he did a book signing here in town. It is a short book but as all of his books do, makes you think about yourself and the people you love.

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