I lost a friend yesterday. We didn’t fight. I didn’t make her angry. I suppose I disappointed her, but she never said so. I simply ignored her because I was too wrapped up in my own ups and downs to think about anyone else. My own heart was too full to bear the weight of anyone else. Yesterday, my friend died. I didn’t have a chance to tell her goodbye, or that I loved her, or that she had carved a niche in my heart all her own. I hope she knew how much she meant to me, because I didn’t tell her.

My story is not unusual, unfortunately. It is a painful reminder of just how much words do matter–but only when they are shared. They void they leave when kept to oneself is too overwhelming to let it become permanent. I wish I hadn’t.

I’ll miss you, Phyllis.