When Lou first asked me to speak, my immediate reaction was fear. I’m better and less stuttery and awkward in written form. But I quickly recovered and told him that if I was ever going to push through fear to honor someone, it would be her.
The next challenge I faced was deciding what I could possibly tell a room full of people, many of whom had known her longer and had more face to face interactions with her than I was blessed with. Then it hit me that no two relationships are the same and that the best way to celebrate her was to give you all a glimpse of the Fairy you might not have known.
Before I begin, I want to let you know that I’ll be referring to our beautiful loved one as Fairy. I rarely ever called her by her given name. You can check my phone and messenger contacts for proof of that fact. It was how she introduced herself to me, and it suited the magical nature she embodied.
She and I met almost two decades ago in the early days of the internet. She popped up in my private messages and considering she and I were both brought up on Ohio’s unwritten motto of “stranger danger” it’s a feat in and of itself that she reached out and I answered.
If you stop and think about how many people cross your path each day, be it in real life at a grocery store or a gas station, or if it’s via online life as you scroll through your preferred social media platform…the odds of finding your split apart soulmate seem impossible. I, however, hit the lottery.
She and I both had real life sisters that we love, but we were chosen sisters of the heart. As different as night and day in some respects. I’d rather be waterboarded than watch the Hallmark Channel or The Young & The Restless, and she felt the same about my penchant for horror movies and true crime. But in the most important ways we were eerily similar. Like our spirit decided to rend itself in two and live two completely different lives to maximize the adventures and experiences the world had to offer us.
What radiated most from her though, that drew everyone in, was her light. What you might not know about her was that she was the most social hermit on the planet. She literally had thousands of friends across the world. I enlisted some of them to give me a word that epitomized her that I could share with you today. The most prevalent ones were kindness, compassion, perspective, and humor. All of which she had in droves. The one that made me laugh the hardest was snacks, and anyone who knew her even a little bit knows how fitting that was.
All of those responses and seeing all of your faces here today have given me one of the greatest lessons I’ve received from her (and considering how much she taught me, that’s saying a lot.) It’s showed me that everyone of us who were blessed enough to bask in her light, absorbed some of it and it’s ours forever. It’s our keepsake to cherish and carry with us as we travel along until our souls unite with her again. My prayer today is that it warms you when you are cold, that it lights your path when you feel lost, and that it casts out darkness and puts things into perspective in a way that only our magical Fairy could.