Have you ever thought about what you would say to your loved ones today if you knew that tomorrow you wouldn’t be around? Throughout my life I’ve felt the crushing weight of time on my shoulders and repeatedly found myself toying with the notion of what final words I would leave behind with the ones who truly matter. Time and time again I’ve been consumed with the very real possibility that at any moment the life I was given could be easily taken away. With the flick of a switch a bright light dims and in its place is only a memory; one of the people and things it once cast its glow upon.
If there is one thing I have learned in the last few years with the deaths of family and friends it’s that life is fleeting. Not a single day is guaranteed. With that being said I’m left to wonder if those I leave behind will truly know what they mean to me; the impact that each one of their lives has had on mine. Will they understand the decisions I have made? Will they know how deeply important they are to me? Will they only be left with the parts of me that I allow them to see while the rest fades away? These questions are simply nothing more than a few among many; questions that press upon my brain like hot irons to my flesh, scorching me until I appease them with answers that I cannot possibly give.
The sheer weight of these questions and the ticking of the clock have brought me to a point where I can only find peace of mind in knowing that the people who matter to me understand the full extent of their lasting effects on my life thus far. I’ve decided after much deliberation that the only way to do this is to write a letter to each and every one of the people in my life who have mattered to me in some way; to leave behind pages upon pages with countless words detailing the inner workings of my heart and mind so that these people may comprehend the full weight of their presence in this little thing called life.
To you and even to me this is, by no means, a simple task. There are countless people who have entered my life in just the short years that I’ve been on this earth. For some reason, though, it doesn’t seem as daunting as it should. Oddly enough the task seems highly appealing and even cathartic. So today with a pen in hand I begin the task of writing several dozen letters to the people in my life who deserve a proper farewell should a day come when it is needed; a farewell with explanations, advice, and many of the words that I would otherwise never share. Today I begin to bridge the gap between wondering and knowing. When the day comes and we’re not together, you’ll find the truth you need in the words of a letter.
Until next time…stay classy.
– C.M. Berry