R.I.P. Rebecca Byrd

I wasn’t there for you in the last few months of your life, and I feel like I’ve let you down by not even paying you a visit in the hospital. The least I can do is make this post so that some memory of you will live on through the Internet.

You were one of my good friends since middle school and I never once thought otherwise about you. I never once cared that you were in special ed classes, nor did I ever truly believe you were as stupid as you claim. Maybe you weren’t some genius, but you were not dumb either- you were funny, polite, kind, and you respected others. You even stood up for what you believed in. Another thing about you that I will always admire is that you were honest. You took responsibility for your actions and blamed no one but yourself when something went wrong for you. That’s a trait that even the ‘gifted and talented’ students back at our high school didn’t have.

Your life did take a hit when you started drugs. You told me you tried it because you wanted to get closer to your fiance and try to understand his addictions. That was probably the dumbest thing you have ever done – though really, I believe it was the only dumb thing you did in your life – but even then you took responsibility for your actions and did everything you could to overcome the addiction and get yourself clean. It wasn’t easy, and you struggled, but I know you did your best.

I was there for you during that time, though I couldn’t help you all of the time. I tried to give you rides home when I could, and I always worried when I heard that you were on the streets. I’ll never get to ask or know if you had actually used me one time when I drove you around town. I’ve always had my suspicion that you were shoplifting behind my back, but I never said a word because I knew you were going through a tough time and had to survive. You had no money and you starved some days. I forgive you if you did- the Beccie I knew probably didn’t want to steal, and I know that if you had, then you felt terrible that you used me. You really did care about other people and you hated hurting others. If you had told me that you didn’t steal during that time, I would believe you. I remember seeing you look nervous and guilty, but then you could’ve backed down and decided not to take anything.

I was there that week or so before Christmas when your mother called me in tears, wanting someone to get you to come home for the holidays. You had it bad then- when you got in my car, you cried and said how it wasn’t fair. You thought everyone was against you and no one cared for you. The drugs had fried your brain and made you paranoid, and yet while you thought your family hated you, all you wanted was to spend Christmas with them. I tried to convince you that your family loved you, no matter what you did, but you didn’t seem to believe me then. I hope that you did realize that they do love you long before then. Your mother wouldn’t have cried so hard or begged so much if she hadn’t.

Though I wasn’t around when you got pregnant with Serinity, I knew then that you would do everything in your power to overcome your problems. You were good with kids, so I knew you would be a good mother. There was no question in my mind that you would better yourself for her sake. I didn’t mean to distance myself from you. I really did want to go to your baby shower, but I had to look after my own family members. I did at least remember your birthday this year- it was the same day as Easter for my ‘crazy religion’ as you once called it… Well, it was also on Cinco de Mayo, so it’s kind of hard to forget. I left a message for you on facebook that day, though you never replied. You were probably busy with your baby or baby shower then, though I wonder if you ever got it. I wished I did more to let you know I remembered.

It’s awful that Serinity will have to grow up without you. At least we have a lot of pictures of you so she’ll know what you looked like, and we have many fond memories of you to pass onto her. You have always been a good person no matter how many mistakes you made, so there’s no doubt in my mind that you’re in heaven now watching over us. I’ll never forget the times you ask who ‘Ed’ is and suggest that the classes should be called ‘Special Beccie’. And when I play Kingdom Hearts, I’ll always remember how you laughed when Sora climbed trees and thought he was humping them. I have nothing but good memories of you and I’ll miss you greatly. So rest in peace Becca- don’t worry about us. We’ll keep on living and keep your memory alive.

Bye friend.

Rebecca Byrd

May 5, 1987 – July 10, 2013


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