Dear Jakey,

 These days leading up to the 8th are so incredibly emotional and so lost in some intense memories that I am pretty much in a fog. And what strikes me the most is how different it is than last year. I was so worried and anxious to get over the 1 year hump last year that I don’t think I was at all prepared for what the 2 year hump would be like. In fact, I don’t think I really thought there would be a hump. But there is. And it is so hard without you.

I have come to realize that those last memories with you, those things that seemed like real life but now have so much more significance because they ended up being your last will be what I remember. It hit me hardest at Thanksgiving time because I couldn’t remember much about Thanksgiving 2011 but could remember almost everything of Thanksgiving 2010. I remember those details from your last Thanksgiving vividly. I can picture you on the couch, which is no longer ours, with the reindeer ears on. I can picture you sitting at Prime for dinner in your handsome sweater – the one you wore when we buried you. And I can picture how brave and strong you were in that spica cast, even though I know you were frustrated as hell.

The continued impact of your loss leaves me a little shaken too. There are just so many ways that we need to continue to come to terms with this so called new normal. The way me and Daddy interact, the way me and Ethan interact and just the way I interact with others in general. And just trying to be a good, not totally pissed off person continues to be hard and I am not sure I am doing very well lately. It is not really anger anymore but just having to listen to the constant voice in my head reminding me that we are all different and therefore what we find is hard is different.

But I keep thinking of you. And the way you lived your life. And I remember your bravery through it all and I realize that I need to suck it up. And I need to work on the relationships with those I love that are still here. And I guess I just want you to know how much you mean to me. And I know that you know I am struggling because I have gotten the signs from you. I really have and they have helped. And I guess I just remain thankful for you and wish our time together on Earth was much much longer.