How does one cope with a loss? How do you keep moving forward?
If Mirranda was here, she’d tell you how. She would remind us that life is short and that we have to keep moving forward, whether we want to or not. She’d tells us that we shouldn’t be mourning but celebrating life. Then she’d tell us that it’s okay to cry, offer her shoulder to cry on, and then tell a joke to bring a smile to your face.
You see, when I first met Mandy, it was in the seventh grade (she was in 6th grade). There was only a few months left in the year, but she made it such an amazing transition for me. That’s just how she was. She was crazy, spunky, beautiful, and didn’t care what people thought. She was one in a million. I didn’t realize then the impact she would have in my life.
As we got older, our friendship grew. We were changing, growing up, but one thing that always remained was the bond that we shared. We got ready for her first homecoming together, we encouraged each other to do our best, and we were always there. From driving around in that yellow truck of hers to get cheeseburgers with mac sauce to going on a crazy adventure. It was us against the world.
We made plans to get an apartment together, even looked at a few, and she held my hand and told me it would be okay when I learned I was pregnant at the age of 18. That’s just how she was. She accepted me for all my faults- which there’s a lot- and not once did she ever judge me. Not once did she put me down. She loved with everything she had. She gave it her all. Mandy wasn’t the kind of person who was vindictive and made life hell. She was kind, caring, funny, and ready to drop anything when you needed her too. She was selfless, talented, and beautiful in more ways than one. She left a mark wherever she went. No one could forget her or that bright smile of hers.
She took every precaution in life but also lived it to the fullest. She didn’t let anything hold her back or tell her she couldn’t do it. When she wanted to shave her head or put purple in it–she did it. And she didn’t care what people might say. She took risks but she also held her heart close. She loved too much and smiled even more.
She had a way to make everyone feel accepted. Her laughter was contagious. Her smile infectious. She wore her heart on her sleeve. She expressed her emotions and never held them back. She was the most genuine, kind hearted soul I have ever encountered in my life. Her big eyes were always warm and inviting. And I could never help but to feel happy in her presence. She just had that kind of aura, the one which brought out the best in everyone, and is nothing short of a blessing.
There is so much to say about the kind of person Mirranda was and how she lived. None of it negative. She might be gone but certainly not forgotten. I know she is smiling up there at each and everyone of us. I will never forget the impact that she has made or the mark on my heart she has left behind. It is a great loss but it would’ve been an even greater loss not to know her.
This isn’t goodbye…only a see you later.
I love you always, Mirr Mirr. Always and forever.