I entered 2021 with such high hopes, expectation and excitement. Surely no year could be worse than 2020. 2020 brought on a global pandemic -- case closed. I was convinced a new year would bring better days.
On the last day of the first week of 2021, I went to wake up my best friend of 37 years, maid of honor, classmate, and godmother of Gabby and Michael to find her dead in her home from COVID.
It was the most traumatic and devastating day of my life. Meka and I spent our entire lives together -- from grade school and college, to our moves to Columbia for our careers. I would face days I literally thought I was falling apart emotionally, mentally and physically following January 7.
Meka was diagnosed with COVID on Christmas Day 2020. We didn't have access to the vaccine then and didn't know about a more harmful variant. Despite our efforts to care for her, she was dead less than two weeks later.
When I was diagnosed with COVID on Christmas Day 2021, I was vaccinated, boosted and asymptomatic. The spiritual attack on me didn't work.
My faith, family, therapy and Grief Share support group brought me through the darkest days of 2021.
There were times I didn't know how our family could pick up the pieces to continue serving you through this business, but we were surrounded by team members and volunteers to help us maintain and even expand -- opening Gabby's retail store and girls' salon December 4th.
YOU were so kind, understanding and supportive -- checking on and praying for us.
While I've honestly struggled with the thought of leaving my BFF in 2021 (silly, right?), I know love never dies. It never leaves. Love is so strong, it remains. Grief is a price of love, and I'm grateful I had such a special friendship and I have many precious memories that will carry me the days ahead.
May your 2022 be filled with love, memories made, health and prosperity.
Grateful for you,