I wrote my first blog four months ago and have finally mustered the courage to post it. Attempting to put such strong feelings into words was a challenge.
After living what most would say is a “fairytale life” for the last four months, I only felt it right to start a blog to remember this magical time in my life! My cousin, also known as my cousin’s husband, came to visit Casey, my sweet husband, and I last week. You may ask why my cousin, who is more my sister and very best friend, didn’t join him. Well, last year (September 7, 2012) she died in a tragic accident. I can honestly attribute the leap of faith to drop out of Pharmacy School and join my high school sweetheart across the world to her vivacious living. Losing someone so close to you truly revolutionizes your outlook on life. Life is over in a blink of an eye, and I decided to take this once in a lifetime opportunity because of her… and my Aunt Cheryl. Her mother, beyond grief-stricken, died nineteen days after her in a terrible car accident. That month of my life felt like a scary movie, and no words can describe the pain. These two women were the happiest, loving, and most genuine people I have ever known. You will understand why this introduction was necessary once I start my blog from this weekend’s events.
My cousin Josh and I went to Paris, France for the 1st Brittanie Michelle Pederson Annual Trip. Although she never made it out of the U.S., she constantly dreamed of visiting the entire world. In particular, she was obsessed with France and the French language. We felt her with us the entire trip. We discovered the most wonderful tribute for the first anniversary of their passing: LOVER’S BRIDGE PARIS. Legend says to write your lover’s name on a padlock and lock it onto one of the bridges. Then throw the key into the Seine River as a symbol of your undying love.
“Undying love,” these words stuck with me. The only thing you have once someone leaves this world is the love they added to your life. My Cousin and Aunt always went out of their way for anyone and everyone to make them feel loved and special. Their unique and unconditional love is something that simply could never die. I will carry it on in my heart, in my smile, and in my soul for the rest of time. The evening in Paris was beautiful and was such a special memorial for them. The moment we stepped out of the taxi onto the bridge it felt just right. The sun was just setting and the weather was perfect, absolutely serene. I will let the pictures speak for themselves.
As soon as we left the bridge a beautiful rainbow appeared, although there had been zero rain the entire day. I didn’t even make it across the street to photograph it before it disappeared; we took it as a sign from Brittanie. So touching.
That night we drank entirely too much (for Britt, we tell ourselves). At 15 euro (roughly 20$) a drink, we racked up quite a bill that night. We tried to “bar hop” but literally ended up at the same bar three times in a row. We met this lovely bartender named James who travels the entire world; he definitely gave us the travel bug if we hadn’t caught it before. There we decided we would take a trip for Brittanie every year to commemorate her. There will never be a moment that I don’t miss my dear best friend, but at least I know the Parisian legend will hold true in my heart. Her love will live on forever.