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Snapshots of Murphy
I open up the dusty box from the bottom of my bed, smelling the rubber from the polaroids, and cat hair. I wipe back a tear from my eye, knowing that your gone. Before me lay endless stacks of photos, from the day I met you to the night before the crash. I lightly pick one up, flipping it over. My mind fades out, as I see the two of us in highlighter-bright bathing suits, cheeky smiles plastered across our faces.
“Come on, Angie!” You yell at me, from the raft floating in the pool, your hair clinging to the sides of your face from the salty water. I stand, unsure, because the water is six feet deep, scary at my merely four foot height.
“Okay, okay…” I mumble, jumping into the heart-shatteringly cold water, my body frozen still for a split second. I come up for air, gasping for breath. flailing my arms and legs about, I try stay above water. You reach a hand out to me, to pull me onto the raft.
“Was that so hard, Angie?” You ask me.
“Yes.” I reply, through a scowl.
You taught me how to swim.
A smile spread across my face, as I gently lay the snapshot down onto the quilted covers of my bed. I pick up another, careful not to smudge the emotions depicted on the two-by-two. We were fitted in skin-tight pants, and baggy t-shirts, parading around the park, laughing at the wind.
It was the night of the storm.
While others were held safe and warm, nestled in their cozy homes watching reruns, Murphy and I were outside, taking our one chance to visit the little-kids’ park without being laughed at.
The summer breeze was warm, before it picked up. Barefoot, as always, we’d slid, swung, and bounced to our heart’s content.
“Jump!” You yelled at me.
Suspended midair on the uncomfortable plastic swing, I jumped off, the wind holding me steady for just a moment, a glorious place between land and heaven. I closed my eyes, and let my feet fall to the ground.
You had followed me, seconds after.
You taught me how to feel the wind.
My heart if racing, now, as I pick up my last photo left. The last time I would see you alive. Saturday night, at my house. You gave me the news that you would be going away for a while, that you would come back soon. But you wouldn’t be.
Your weak smile flashed in the camera, I told you I wanted a before and after pictures of when you left. Little did I know that your “after” picture would be your autopsy shot.
“I’m really going to miss you, Murphy.” I say, sitting on the balcony across from my bedroom.
“I’m going to miss you, too.” She replied, laying down onto the fuzzy flannel blanket I’d brought out. You stare up into the stars, a bewildered look on your face.
“Do you think things will ever be the same?” You asked me.
“I don’t know.” Is all I can come up with. I choke back tears as you grab my hand.
"It's going to be okay," She mutters to me. Although Murphy had never lied to me, I had a hard time believing it.
You taught me how to love
* * *
A single tear crawls down my face, as I drop the film back into the empty shoebox. I wipe my face quickly, not wanting anyone to see my tears.
Even though your gone, I still feel your shaking arms around me, holding me close.
“It’s okay.” You seem to whisper in my ear. You slowly dissolve into the pictures, becoming a memory in my eyes.
As you disappear, I quietly whisper, “I know.” And this time I know it's true.