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TCT’s The Countless Thanks 2021: Veronica Vincent

For my brown, 

All I’m left to look at are the posts that bury themselves deep with pictures of a brunette girl with a dainty nose and perfect eyes. She used to be blonde and loud in her opinions—I guess from miles away the sound drowned her out. I don’t know how you grew up to be so perfect in every way imaginable, but I am envious of the path your life has followed. From the mountains you’ve climbed to the mushrooms in your pockets, how I wish I could have known you before your time was over. I regret not knowing your middle name or never saying goodbye, but I know now that I’ll meet someone like my brown again. You’ve paved the way for where I want my future to go and all I can say is thank you; thank you for being you.

For my silver, 

I’ve known you through the predominant stages of your life, but more importantly, the vibrant colors of your hair. From a burnt orange, all the way to shades of gray, you will always be remembered as the girl with silver hair. I wonder if you still snort when you laugh or mock your relationship with your mom. But I wonder when you last dyed your hair, did you know what you were bleaching away. While it’s now blue and short, I still see the girl you used to be—the one that matched with me. To put it plainly, I miss you. I don’t miss your old hair colors or the way you wore your clothes, I miss your personality because it never grows old. Thank you for being a role model for me, even at your lowest. I am who I am today because of your uplifting advice and witty statements.

For my white, 

While we didn’t bond as others did in our class, at the end of the school year, I still received a white invitation for your farewell party. And, later that month, I can recall a blurry memory of you wearing a white, short dress and no shoes. I can piece together an image in my head of you weaving in and out of people to thank everyone that made even the shortest appearance; you always were good at showing your gratitude. In return, I want to say thank you for showing me what a large impact even the smallest amount of appreciation can do. White represents something pure and heavenly, the way you were known for saying thank you will always represent that to me.

For my beige, 

All I’ve ever known you as was the quiet writer and the color of book pages painted with age. I’ve always been envious of your way with words and could only ever hope of being told, “you’re just like Abby.” I would usually find you on the beige couch in the corner of the classroom and it was comforting to know that you were there. Now, every day, I recall your impact on our little community like a lingering ghost. I tear up thinking of the last time you walked through the door—beige in color as well. As soon as we got close, you had to go and leave. But, your guiding hand, which I’ve referred to before, still leads me in the right direction on a daily basis and I couldn’t thank you enough for indirectly helping me through my junior year.

For my blue,

To put it quite plainly, I still will look through the columns you’ve posted to view someone that you used to be. Like looking through a window, I see words from someone so well-spoken, statements from someone so bold, and punctuation from someone so blunt. All of these things remind me of the color blue for no particular reason—like most things you did, they seemed to be without any reason except to make others smile. I won’t lie, I don’t know who you are now and what’s become of your name, but I do know you are making people smile. Not only do I miss the way you treated others, but I also miss the way that you went about doing so. While we haven’t talked in some time, I want to say thank you for always turning my day around even when it wasn’t your job to do so. Now, I hope you’re the same light for someone else that you were for me.

For my pink, 

While our connection was deeper than this, I will always refer to you as “the girl who edited my stories for me.” You always saw firsthand the terrible rough drafts that had made it too far in the writing process but, you never judged. On Google Docs, I could see your pink cursor gliding over every line searching for grammatical errors; I saw the same vibrant hue highlighting and making hundreds of critiques—ones that I needed ever so badly. While it seems like an insignificant part of your day, I promise you that it always made mine all the better. You put in the effort to help me and I will always thank you for the writer you’ve helped me to become.

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