Happy Birthday. From the moment I saw you I knew that I wanted you. It was probably pretty superficial but your depth was immediately recognized when you want out the way to help someone with a wheelchair. I decided that you were someone I wanted to meet so I introduced myself and over the period of the next two years I got to know you better. I saw how you always put other’s ahead of yourself and that you were passionate about making your mark on the world. I got to know your family who you supported through thick and thin no matter what. I saw you leading groups of people with confidence and kindness and for some strange reason I ended up loving you. But the way you threw out a “love you” in a farewell, and the way that I loved you was totally different. I watched you date other people and finally settle down with one. I saw you genuinely happy and while I was happy for you, a huge part of me wished the outcome could been different. You were the one person on the planet I had no reservations about having a future with. And that’s still the case. I realized that I needed some distance and made a hard decision. You assured me that I was family and that you would always have my back. I’ve learned that sometimes the hardest thing you can do for someone you love is to walk away. I want you to be happy and I know that you are in your current relationship. I want to send a long flowery description of all the things I love about you but will settle for a cliche and trite birthday wish. I would love to tell you how much I miss you and that no matter who I meet, they’re still not you. But that would be pointless and cause more harm than good. So I’ll write it here. Where you’ll (hopefully) never see it. Loving from afar is what I do best. I wish you all the best and hope that all your dreams are realized because out of everyone I know, you deserve it the most. I love you and always will–despite the distance and time. But I also recognize that you have your own life to live so I’ll let you do that. Just know that I’m forever proud of you and that I’m here if you ever need anything. I hope she realizes what a gem she has. Happy Birthday.