It has been a very sad and difficult week for me, as I just received terrible news that one of my closest and dearest friends has passed away. Despite all the pain, the tears and the hundreds of messages dedicated to her all over Facebook, I still haven’t realized that it has truly happened. I feel like I’ve been living a nightmare and just can’t wake up from it. I’ve tried everything to keep busy but nothing seems to help. The tears keep flowing, my heart is in pieces and the pain only grows deeper each day as I try to come to terms with what has happened. I might not know how to cope with the loss of friend, but I do know how to write, so today I’d like to dedicate this post to my dear friend Tony.
I won’t be writing about food today, in fact, I won’t be sharing a recipe at all. Today I simply need to write. I need to write to help deal with the emotional roller coaster ride I’ve been on. I need to find a way to commemorate Tony for the amazing human being that she was. I need to pour my heart out, hoping that I’ll be able to find some comfort in the power of words.
Tony was a wonderful girl, always full of life and ready to help those in need. She was not only a great friend but also a great cook; we often exchanged recipe ideas and shared our passion for cooking. After studying hotel management in Switzerland, she decided to open her own dessert catering business in Panama. She would make the most delicious and gorgeous cakes and cupcakes, paying as much attention to their looks as to their taste. I’ll never forget all the weekends and holidays she spent over at my house, always asking if she could make one more cake or one more salad. She spent two weeks with me once in New York, and although she was on holidays, she never stopped cooking, insisting that enjoying a homemade meal after a long day was one of the most important moments of the day.
Tony was taken away from us way too soon, way too young. She was so loved by her family, her friends, her classmates and everyone who got the chance to meet her. The last time I saw her was at my wedding in July 2014, but despite living on different continents, we never stopped talking. Not a week would go by without a text message from her, sometimes simply saying “I miss you”. She was that kind of friend; the one who always wanted to check in and show that she cared. We danced all night together at my wedding, and after all the celebrations, we never got a chance to say goodbye. A bride always gets caught up in a million things. Now that I look back at it, I understand why we didn’t get to say goodbye. My last memory of her was a happy one: we were smiling, laughing, dancing, having the time of our lives…like we always did when we were together.
It has been a week and I still haven’t woken up from this nightmare. I think one never truly recovers from the death of a best friend; we just learn to live with a hole in our heart, hanging on to the great memories to stay sane. I find comfort in the fact that I still feel Tony’s presence in my life. She might be unseen and unheard, but I feel her right here besides me — smiling as usual — every step of the way. I miss you my angel.