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happy birthday

this picture was taken on your last earthly birthday - little did we know.

you just turned 21 and we were on our way to have lunch with your family,

so you could have your first (ever 😉) alcoholic drink.

today, you'd be 28.

life at 28 is so different than life at 21.

i once heard a fact that every seven years

the cells in your entire body are destroyed

and replaced with new cells.

that means that who you would be today

would be a different person on a cellular level.

of course, we all are.

life changes so much in your twenties.

& we're all just trying to figure it out

as we transition from one season into the next.

but birthdays hold so much potential,

so many what-ifs.

i can't help but be consumed with these questions.

who would you be?

what would your life look like?

would you be married? what job would you have? where would you be living?

would you have a baby?

would your hair finally be as long as you wanted it to be?

how would you have grown even more beautifully + confidently into yourself?

how would our friendship have grown?

how would we have navigated our twenties alongside each other?

what advice would you have given me the past seven years?

and of course, very importantly, what would we be doing tonight to celebrate?

your laugh would be more distinct in our memories,

you wouldn't be what feels like almost an idea,

or a beautiful, untouchable dream.

every year i'm caught off guard how painful these days still are

as if there are set dates in the calendar year where you trip and the scab starts bleeding again.

i guess some things will never make more sense, no matter how much time passes.

& i guess the pages of our grief diaries never truly end,

but doesn't that mean the love never ends?

the relationship never ends?

you, sweet friend, never end. ✨

happy birthday, court

for as long as we exist, so do you.

i'm not sure the rules up there, but i hope you can see how many people are celebrating you today and every day.

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