Two years gone… and I’m not sure what to say.

That I still think of you every day; that I finally feel OK?

Because both are true.

When you died, everyone told me different things: time would heal, time wouldn’t heal, it would get easier, it would never go away.

They’re all true, too.

Grief is not fair. Grief is not linear. Grief does not align with years or fit into boxes or make sense.

Which means not every country song makes me cry, but some do.

Which means I can go hours without seeing your face, but never a full day.

Grief, at the beginning, was really selfish.

I focused on being left behind. I wished I’d been in the car. I was envious you didn’t have to exist in a world that seemed so empty.

But these days, I don’t think about me; I think about you.

I think about the two extra years I’ve had on earth, and I wish you’d had that.

I think about our friends having babies. The new countries I’ve seen. The laughter I’ve shared with your nieces and nephews. And I wish you’d had that.

Maybe grief, in the end, is really gratitude. For the time we had together, for the time that remains.

I turned 31 yesterday, and because of you, I’m not afraid of getting older. Because of you, I know aging is a privilege — one I won’t take lightly.

You are my reason yesterday, and today, and tomorrow.

To ask questions, to explore, to say yes instead of no and “I love you” every day.

To run barefoot in the grass and pet every dog I see.

To stop for ice cream no matter what time it is.

To hug, to smile, to chant, to dance.

To live and love fiercely.

And to never, ever stop.