Just thought about writing you. The last week has been really rough on me between getting ready for this trip to Africa, Jon Clark passing away and then hearing the news that Lulu Jull died too. I thought maybe it would help talking it out.
When you died, I had a lot going on. I was blessed to have a community that surrounded me with love and comfort. Snowy and I grew closer than we had ever been before (he says hi by the way). I had confidence in myself that I knew you were there with me no matter what I was doing. When I hugged your dad the night that I made it into finals at the Freestyle Worlds, I was hugging him for you too, you were there, I know you were.
Last year was amazing. I went to Europe, I accepted a job with First Descents, and Snowy and I bought a house. One step closer to our happily ever after. I wish you were here to see the house, it is amazing. We will raise our children in here one day and I will look into the beautiful backyard and know that you are out there, watching over all of us. I bought a bean bag (even though Snowy told me not to) and I can hear you giggling as you jump on it, that laugh, that laugh that I will never get to hear again.
After the last week, hearing that the man who taught me how to kayak and another bad ass woman have both drifted up to heaven to be with you, I have been pretty down. But, then I think about all of the adventures you are having up there and how you can live through every single person that you ever met. You make me smile, you make other people smile when I talk about you. You are a ray of light on a cloudy day, you are the one who is always with me when I am on and off the water. You keep me pushing my limits and you keep me positive and empathetic at work. You taught me love, friendship, kindness, happiness. You are one of the reasons why I have been shaped the way I am today and I thank you for that.
There are moments when I get mad at whoever felt it was your time to go, mad that I can't share adventures with you, mad that I can't share my hardships or my happiness with you, mad that I can never see your smile again on this Earth. But those moments pass after a moment when I begin remembering how lucky I was to call you my best friend. How lucky I was to be in Idaho with you, how lucky I was to run the Green with you, how lucky I was to just be in your presence.
I'm heading to Uganda for a month now, your smile and positivity will keep me working hard even on days that I feel I am not excelling. You live in the sun, the air, the trees. I love you Shannon. Forever.