Saturday, December 28, 2013

Saying good-bye to my friend Cara

Dear Cara,

I find it impossible to express what you mean to me through a facebook status update or something else where my words are limited so I thought I'd express myself in a letter to you. The last time I saw you was when you came to my yoga class right before Christmas. I always got excited to see you when you popped your head in the door because I knew you had to drive all the way from Boulder to city park which isn't an easy task. You were always so good about coming to my yoga classes even though I never once attended one of your pole dancing or acro yoga classes that you taught although I always had best intentions of coming. Once I got the pleasure of taking your yoga class after you completed yoga training and I thought it was fantastic. I'm pretty sure you are fantastic at everything you ever taught. I had you demonstrate piking up for my yoga class from a head stand because I wanted to show you off to my students even though I know you didn't like the spotlight. They were in awe of you moving so effortlessly and looking so light and free. You didn't get to see their faces but I did and I can tell you they were impressed.

We all were.

You are the type of friend that I can't even remember how we became friends. It feels like we just always were friends and that's how it would always be. You were one of the few people who was always down to hike 14ers with me. I took you up Humboldt peak for your first one and I remember you brought me a carton of eggs from your chickens because I drove us. That was not an easy hike by any means and I never once heard you complain. We talked about the big things, the little things and the in-between things. I was surprised at how we never actually ran out of things to talk about because, like me, you could talk about just about anything to anyone. We were the only people on top of the mountain that day and we took our time taking pictures and enjoying the view. You told me you were thinking about moving to Louisiana in the next year or so and I remember thinking that I didn't want you to go because you were such a great hiking companion and there are so few people I could count on like you. I never told you I was glad you didn't move but I am.

This year we hiked Mt. Antero together - another 14er and I thought again it would be just me and you because you were the only one who committed to the hike. I loved how when you said you were going to do something you'd be there 100%. Even though two of our other friends came with us you and I got to talk a lot because you sat up front to keep me awake on the midnight drive there and the exhausting drive home. You kept me awake with your stories about your chickens, your family, your dogs and teaching and you let me vent about my frustrations. There aren't too many people you meet in life who you can pour your heart out to like I felt like I could do with you. As wonderful of a talker as you are you are also a great listener. I hope you know that.
You told me this was your favorite photo of you that I took on our Antero hike

I want you to know how much I will miss you. I'll miss seeing your photos on facebook and instagram of your dogs on sunset walks. I'll miss being your partner in gymnastics classes at Qi. I'll miss those delicious eggs you always gifted me from your chickens. I'll miss hearing about the sugar gliders and the foster dogs that always ripped up your house. I'll miss your laugh and seeing your face popping unexpectedly through the door at the yoga studio at 9:30 on a Monday morning. I'll miss having someone to hike with and hula hoop with and having a road trip buddy. I never got a chance to take your acro yoga class although I said I was going to go and for that I'm sorry. I thought I had more time with you than I did. Most of all I will miss our talks.

The last time I saw you right before Christmas we spent time after yoga talking about your sister who was pregnant and what you should buy her for a present. You looked to me for advice since I had just had a baby and in your words you were totally freaked out by kids. We talked about cloth diapers and baby carriers, about your new tattoo of the scene from the Little Prince and a bunch of other things that don't even seem to matter anymore. So many little things we talked about for an hour or so until I had to go. You apologized I remember, thinking that you were taking up my time because you said that you didn't have anything to do and just wanted to hang out. I should have invited you for coffee and talked longer. I'd give anything to have that last day back with you so we could talk just a little bit more instead of rushing to the next thing.

The one thing I don't regret is hugging you. I know you are not a hugger (and I am) but I made you hug me goodbye when we left that day and parted ways. I said, "Cara, we are friends and friends have to hug!" I didn't care if it made you uncomfortable because I just wanted to thank you for making the drive to come and take class so I hugged you. I'm really glad I did that.

I hope you know Cara how much our friendship means to me. You are someone who I have no clear memory on how you came into my life yet I'll always remember how you left. I'm grateful for the time I did get to spend with you even if it wasn't enough. I'll see you in every blue sky on top of every mountain  I hike. I'll see you in every walk I take with my dog when the sun sets. I'll remember you in yoga and gymnastics classes. Monday mornings won't be the same without you. An empty void is what I feel without your physical presence on this earth.

You'll never be far from my mind I want you to know. You touched a lot of people and you should know that as well. Your spirit will shine on and live on here in us and through us.

Until we meet again my friend...

"I suppose in the end, the whole of life becomes an act of letting go. But what always hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye" - Life of Pi

For those who would like to help Cara's family with their expenses for her funeral etc. please follow the link below set up by the family:

1 comment:

  1. I came here from your post on Cara's FB page. I never got to know her in person like you did (we met twice while I was visiting friends in Aurora) but we've been online friends since the days when you had to get a code from a friend to open a livejournal account. She always amazed me with her openness to having new experiences, and with her compassion for animals.

    Your tribute to her is beautiful, and captures the girl I've come to know in the last decade. Thank you so much for putting it in words.