Losing people is tough. It is one of those “life things” that you would rather not think about. What makes it even worse is if the person was a good friend, close family member, or someone you’ve known your entire life. For Melissa Callahan, from Grande Prairie, Alberta, this is exactly the case.
Melissa recently wrote a letter to her late friend Judah and posted it on social media. It was a very moving letter that he will never get to read, but touched his father, Jamie Soles, in more ways than one. Here is how the letter starts...
“I miss ya Judah. I can’t believe it’s been 3 years. 3 years since I last saw you laugh, sing, dance, joke around, play guitar, and live. I find it so hard to write about these feelings and memories.
Melissa goes on to say, “It’s been 3 years though, and about time I write them down and share them. Your life and death have had such an impact on my life and most of the people I know.”
Jamie recently posted Melissa’s full letter to her Facebook page and the words will make you swell up with tears of happiness, grief, love, loss, and a whole other host of emotions.
Here, let your emotions “be your guide” and give this touching letter of remembrance a read...
"I miss ya Judah.
"I can’t believe it’s been 3 years. 3 years since I last saw you laugh, sing, dance, joke around, play guitar, and live. I find it so hard to write about these feelings and memories. It’s been 3 years though, and about time I write them down and share them. Your life and death have had such an impact on my life and most of the people I know.
"Judah Daniel Soles. I grew up with you and your family. Even though I wasn’t as close to you as some, my life is full of memories of you, you really were the life of so many parties. I don’t know how anyone who knew you couldn’t be affected by you, even if it was only for a short time. And I knew you my entire life. I can remember you from back when we first lived in Red Deer. I remember you at my 4th birthday party with Rosco the Clown. I remember Timbrel painting our faces at your house. I remember jumping on the trampoline and playing house and having ‘tea parties’. When we moved to Grande Prairie, and you and your family soon followed, I remember playing ‘Ship’ on our jungle gym in the backyard. The best ship, where our rag tag group of pirates fished for leaves with rakes and rowed on the swings and played until the rain came down and we went to harbour in Ashley’s and Rachel’s room. I remember having a huge water fight with the neighbor boys over the fence. All of us were soaked and we got in such trouble because the deck was all wet and we were supposed to eat lunch out there. We still did. Basking in our sweet victory. Those neighbor boys never stood a chance. 2 against 10 is hardly fair. I remember picking almost all the raspberries off a neighbours bush with you and you firmly telling all us littler kids how this was okay ‘because in the bible Jesus said his disciples could eat the grain in the field, just not take it away’ and this obvious applied to us stealing raspberries. Church, picnics, field trips, and so much more are coloured with memories of you, like rehearsing for those awkward, embarrassing church plays. Sweet memories now. I remember going to countless boys choir concerts, and being so proud because I knew you. I was friends with one of the best singers there. I remember bike rides with you, Jewel, and Zion. I loved how you and Zion would just drop by during a bike ride for water. I remember spending hours at your house hanging out with Zion and Jewel. You were there, playing video games, music, goofing off, telling awesome stories; overall being a pretty cool presence and a great older brother. I remember being measured on the wall with everyone and how all of a sudden you were a million miles taller than me. I remember playing at the park with you and the girls and jumping from the garage roof onto the trampoline. I remember standing around the bonfire at New Years with you, and asking you for music recommendations. I still listen to so many of them. I remember making the dumbest home movie of all time with you, Zion, Jewel, and Ashley. Best thing ever. I remember you and your guitar, how you would play it on walks. Our travelling troubadour. I remember when you first got that little car. How on Jewel’s birthday we fit 5 girls in it and you drove us to the mall. How I was so embarrassed when I fell up the stair of the parkade right in front of you. I remember sitting on your parents red couch, reminiscing with everyone about all the antics we got up too as kids. The parents were aghast and it was wonderful.
"I remember when you got your first truck, you were so proud. I also remember when you got your first bike. You were so excited, and I thought it was pretty freaking cool. There are still some epic pictures that attest to that. I remember the day I learned you were gone. I remember it so clearly. I remember the utter shock and disbelief. I just couldn’t believe it. You were allowed to be in the hospital, maybe with some minor injuries, not gone though. We were in Kelowna for a wedding and I’d never felt so hopeless and far from home. You were so ingrained in life, I grew up with the Soles and you were a Soles and you were my friend and you were always there, making things livelier, funnier, and musical. It was a haze after that. Our community, and one of the families I was closest too, was so broken. I didn’t think I could cry so much. Life was divided into a painful before and after.
"Now, 3 years have gone by. The pain is still there, sometimes acute, but more often an empty ache, that catches me when I hear a song that reminds me of you. I had to leave many stores while shopping this past Christmas season, because Blue Christmas was playing. Fast Car, Falling Slowly, All that I have Sown, Perfect by Hedley, anything by Thriving Ivory, Apologize by One Republic, and See you Again. The first few notes play and it takes me back in time through all the memories, sweet and painful. I think about you often, and slowly it hurts less, but my gosh. Judah Soles, I miss you. So much has happened in 3 years, and I find it’s easier not to talk about these painful things. Mostly I’ve struggled with talking about how much I’ve missed you because so many of my closest friends were/are hurting so much more. Have lost so much more. It’s been 3 years though and I want to talk about my memories of you, because you were great and have left such a mark on my life. That deserves some intentional remembering. So, until we meet again, Happy Birthday (tomorrow) from here on earth."
What do you think of Melissa’s letter to her friend? Wasn’t it so endearing?
Do you have a letter to a late friend you would like featured on Inspiring Day? It would let their life be remembered and cherished by millions. You can email your letters to email@example.com. They may be the topic of an upcoming article.
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