From childhood we had been the best of friends.
I remember that day, so long ago, when we first met. Noelle was the wild child with a kind sprit, while I was sincere and quiet. All my life, I had been told that children were to be seen, not heard - but Noelle was never afraid to speak her mind.
She came to me, the shy new girl, and introduced herself. Her confidence was overpowering, even a bit intimidating. But when she handed me a beautiful pink lily, freshly picked, all my nervousness melted away. Noelle had a special way about her that never failed to put you at ease.
You just couldn't help but love her.
That day was only the beginning. We grew so close that "friends" cannot even describe our relationship. We were sisters.
Through the good times and the bad, Noelle and I were there for each other. From dolls and dress-up, we matured. First dates, Prom, Graduation together went through each and every milestone in a young girl's life.
And as we grew into adults, with busy schedules, families and careers to keep up with, Noelle and I never failed stay in touch. Letters, phone calls and weekend visits kept us close to the very end.
As I reminisce on all the wonderful times we had back then, I curse the drunk driver that took my friend's life. She had so much potential, so many dreams. But one person's stupidity ended it all.
I pray that in Heaven, Noelle will be blessed, just as she has blessed so many here on Earth. And as I walk towards her bed in this bustling city hospital, I slowly lay on her bed a bouquet of freshly picked pink lilies.
Just like the one she gave me.