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On Days That End in Y

My Sister KellieOn Days That End in Y

She Would’ve Been 32.

KellieSeaworld

She would’ve been 32 today, and I’d still give everything to know what the past 13 years looked like on her. 💙 Life isn’t easy without her, and if anything – it only gets harder. You put makeup on, to cry it off.

They don’t tell you that though…that time is incapable of healing certain wounds. 

That there will be days – the happiest of days – where you can’t seem to catch your breath, because she isn’t there, no matter how hard you look. She’s still gone.

I had the hardest time after we were engaged.

People who know grief – know this: there’s something to be said for the enormously happy moments in life that have a sliver of heartbreak within them because you’re missing someone. Those usually come late at night, when the rest of the world sleeps.

It’s the sun shining through rain, the ability to laugh through tears, and being able to find the silver lining on the darkest of days – all wrapped into one. You’re happy and sad, all at the same time. And how does THAT make any goddamned sense?

But it does – of course it does. Because, life.

One of the first questions I asked my best friend after I called to tell him that she was gone was, “How do I get married without her here?”  I wasn’t even 21 yet, wasn’t even dating anyone – let alone anyone I’d consider marrying — and, yet…it was one of the first things I couldn’t stop thinking about.

And now, a little over thirteen years later – I’m about to find out. 

And, I’d by lying if I didn’t tell you that it isn’t a completely gut wrenching and terrifying sort of thing. That the sheer weight of 13 years…of one of the very first thoughts I remember having after losing her…being right in front of me, in this one moment…that makes me so insanely happy…doesn’t sit on my chest a little, and keep me up at night.

But, if the past 13 years has shown me anything…it is this:

I imagine we’ll do that day, as we’ve done the 5,094 others before it. The way she would’ve wanted every single one of them done, the way she’s orchestrated so much of life since April 10th…with happiness, and gratitude, and a ridiculous amount of laughter. Together. We’ll have each other, even if we don’t physically have her.

And we’ll know as butterflies float by, that she is there.

It isn’t to say that these happy days don’t have their tears. It is to say, that we make the best of them…and turn them into the kind of tears she’d be okay with.

If you think we’re good at this life thing…you should know, we learned it from her.

On Days That End in Y…she is who I catch a glimpse of in the mirror as I walk by at just the right angle. She is the voice I hear whispering from deep within, that sometimes even sounds like me. She is who pushes me forward and cheers me on – to live out loud, to always keep going, to never stop being happy. When I hear my heart beat…I know it’s her.

 

Happy 32nd, Kellie. 💙🎈

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Casie's LifeOn Days That End in YTravel

Seattle Sisterhood

SeattleSisters

Sometimes people walk into your life, and they just make sense. In my life, that’s Amber.

Yeaaaars ago, a mutual friend introduced us – noting our EXTREME similarities – like eerily, impossible to ignore similarities. He proclaimed us sisters before we ever even met. We connected on social (Twitter, was it?) And, then…he disappeared from both our lives shortly thereafter, but…he was right. He was so, so right.

I was a photographer, she was working at Westcott.

And…what’s a photographer without any light?

Orlando, 2011.

In 2011, for her 28th birthday, Amber visited Orlando with her younger sister, Ann. We had NEVER met in person. But, it didn’t matter. I invited them into our home, and offered the only space we had — the floor of Kellie’s room. (‍🙄😂) A week or two prior to their arrival, I announced to my family that people I had never met face-to-face were visiting. I was going to take them to Universal! And Disney World (for their FIRST TIME EVER!)

And…they were going to stay with us. On the floor.

Somehow, no one in the family even flinched at this concept.

Soaked on Jurassic Parks River Adventure. In December.

The second they arrived, it was as if we had known each other from the very start – and not just myself and Amber! – Stef and Ann were included in our sisterhood quartet that never missed a beat. Over a weekend of Disney, Universal, Outlet Shopping, late nights, early mornings, finished sentences, and froyo – there were plenty moments of sisterhood.

One night, after we had spent an entire dinner cry laughing into our pizza – we went back to the house still in tears, with my mom and dad looking at the four of us – half bewildered, half totally understanding – it was that rare language of sisters.

Since that first weekend, we’ve more or less been inseparable. In that…we live cross country – but make consistent time for each other via social and messenger and texts and skype and any way we can get a hold of each other – kinda way. And that’s what it’s all about.

There’s something to be said about the time who REALLY make time for you. Who just make life work. Who don’t follow the rules of “someday” — but rather, live by now.

Distance is nothing, If you want someone in your life – if you want to BE THERE for them – then you just.show.up.

You’re already there.

When Amber moved to Seattle, from where I sat in Orlando, it seemed so far away (y’all know we try to convince EVERYONE to move here with us, haha!) …but it also seemed to just make sense.

Seattle is where I saw Amber really come to life.

And then there was a day, while we were catching up, she mentioned having a date later…with a guy named Chris.

On their first trip out to Orlando? I had told the girls about a dude named Sean (upgraded to fiancée in February 2017).  Ann spoke a boy named Bryce (upgraded to husband July 2015).

Two summers ago, my phone rang just after the sun had set here in Orlando. We were house sitting, and through the windows I could hear the nocturnal lake creatures coming to life within the humidity.

On the other end of the phone, was Amber. She and Chris were ENGAGED!

And my next words were, “When do I book the flights?”

Distance didn’t matter. It was never even a question.

Tell me when to be there, I’ll show up.

And two weeks ago, that’s exactly what happened. Stef, Sean, and myself flew out to Seattle. Where we attended Chris and Amber’s stunning, EMOTIONAL, intimate wedding — it was the first time that any of us (short of the four girls) had met each other…and, instantly, it felt like family.

From Amber’s dad treating us to brunch, to her mom pointing out our similarities (even in appearances!), touring Seattle alongside Amber’s family the day after their wedding — and exchanging sarcastic quips and jokes for days with Chris, Bryce, and everyone else…there were multiple occasions where we just couldn’t help but throw the words out there, “This is just like our family…”

And that’s probably because they are our family.

So, on Days that End in Y…this girl, she’s more than a friend – more than a best friend, even.

She’s my sister.

Want to see more from our trip to Seattle? Find me on Instagram!

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#SeanAndCasie*Favorite Posts*On Days That End in Y

On Days that End in Y…

EngagementRing

I just want to be married to him, because that’s the thing I always thought we were anyway – with or without the legality behind it. It has always been him.

No matter how others saw us or where they thought we were in life – we knew.

We were never afraid, there was never anxiety. We had a plan.

When the world assumed, “Well, that’s your next step…” I shook my head. We’re not playing by your rules, world.

When strangers would ask, “Why aren’t you married yet?” We made a case for paying off debts, being financially sound, and wanting to buy over rent.

You think getting married legally binds you to someone? Try purchasing three bedrooms and two and a half baths.

When eyes would widen and jaws would drop over my, “I don’t like diamonds…” they thought, clearly, I must be mistaken. “What woman doesn’t want a diamond?”

This. One. I think diamonds are boring. There. I said it.

The world acts as if there was some rule book we were meant to follow. 

I’d tell you where to shove your rule book, by the way, but I doubt it’d fit… 

Five years ago, I told him weeks into this — he’d never have to ask, my answer would always be, “Yes.” If we had gotten married on the spot…I’m sure the world would’ve had something to say about that then too.

The deepest part of me wishes we had…and told none of you until now.

When you get engaged, people gift you with advice.

Most of its fairly sound. Some of it’s complete crap.

A majority of it is along the lines of, “Make your wedding whatever you want.” 

But, then. When you actually DO that thing. When you make it whatever YOU want – people have opinions. 

And this is why people elope.

Because, fuck your opinions.

On days that end in Y … I think about how I don’t really care about the dress. There won’t be any flowers. We aren’t having a bridal party. We don’t want bachelorette/bachelor parties. I’m not tossing any flowers (because, see: no flowers) and spoiler alert – I won’t be wearing a garter.

AND NO WE STILL DON’T HAVE A DATE YET.

People have opinions on those things. They’ve voiced them.

As if they thought NOW we would start to do things the way the world wanted them done…

On days that end in Y…all I want to do is be married to him.

And that is the beginning and end of everything.

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