Because We Laughed

On the way to school this morning, Meredith informed me that her teacher would be out the rest of this week because a close friend of hers died. We then discussed how hard it is to lose someone we love, and the girls both mentioned Emily. The car remained quiet for a moment, as we all heavily sighed.

Of course, the girls went right back to teasing each other and laughing within just a couple minutes. I couldn’t help but chuckle through my tears, and I thought back to all the times Emily and I laughed and poked fun at each other over the years.

Your Midwestern Is Showing

Since Emily’s mother migrated to Tennessee from Ohio, Emily grew up with at least a basic understanding of “Midwestern lingo.” However, she often laughed and made fun of me for several of the odd things I’d say.

For example, I often say things like, “Yeah, for sure,” or “Yeah, no.” Emily thought these phrases were hilarious, and so we reached a point where we’d just randomly say, “Yeah, no, for sure!” to each other just because.

I also use rhyming phrases a lot like “starvin’ Marvin,” which Emily claimed she’d never heard before. So she would laugh at those and make fun of me for them all the time.

Simiarly, I would make fun of her when her “Southern” started showing. Most of the time, you couldn’t necessarily tell that Emily was from the South. However, she would sometimes say things that sounded like they came straight from East Tennessee.

One time, she said “fire” in the exact same way they do on the Dollywood ride Blazing Fury. She insisted she was trying to say two words at once and it came out wrong, but I made fun of her for that moment constantly.

Needless to say, we loved teasing each other.

Auto Correct Fails

In addition to the humorous moments that came from our regional dialects, we often laughed over ridiculous text message typos and autocorrect fails. Sometimes we’d even send them incorrectly on purpose because they were just too funny to correct.

Some of my favorites included:

“There’s still a Mike’s in my vag!”

Emily and I had to leave a Christmas party with my family and almost immediately head to an orchestra concert we were performing in. Emily had put some of our Mike’s Hard Lemonades in her backpack but then took the backpack inside the concert hall because her music was in there. But, alas, instead of telling me she had alcohol in her bag, autocorrect placed it elsewhere in her body.

“I got my COVID shit!”

I went to get my COVID booster one afternoon. When I sent Emily a text, I said, “I got my COVID shit!” instead of shot. Needless to say, that led to another conversation about whether or not getting your COVID booster came with unlimited access to a toilet after.

Silly Songs (Without Larry)

Emily and I both love music. We also both had a tendency to take songs we both knew and change the words to fit with something else going on. We’d both do it, and we’d laugh at each other every single time. Sometimes I’d get super into it, and Emily would look at me while laughing and say, “You’re a dork, but I love you.”

I honestly can’t recall all the songs we did this with. However, I know that one we all still sing (yes, even the kids) is to the tune of Fitness by Lizzo. We turned it into a song about Mama Kitty, and the kids think it’s hilarious. We have Emily to thank for that one, because she sang it first.

It’s Quiet Now

I loved Emily’s laugh. I loved making her laugh. But now it’s so much quieter in my house, and I miss her. I know that eventually these memories of funny moments will make me laugh again and bring joy to me, but right now they’re often still so painful and raw. Every memory is a reminder of how happy we were, and how that was all stripped away from us both nearly a month ago.

Because of Emily, I laughed a lot. I just hope that I can continue to laugh now without feeling guilty and without bursting into tears.


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