For T'Shauna.

For T’Shauna.

It pains me to write this. But writing is one of the best ways for me to deal with the hardships of life, so here we go.

I met you on the set of Legacies, where you were cast to play one of the witches. The first few thoughts that popped into my head when I saw you were, “She’s so pretty; she looks so cool.” I went up to you and just started a casual conversation. Then we followed each other on Instagram, and that’s when I learned you were a big Descendants fan like me. And that set it off.

It was always a great time working with you. I always made sure to tell people that you were the person who was taking care of plenty of my photos because they were all so amazing. You even introduced me to new things and new people. You helped me get my first paid voice acting job.

You were the magic behind my favorite picture ever of me, the one where we did Jennifer’s Body shoot, and I recreated the lighter-on-the-tongue scene. I remember you were laughing because I had difficulty lighting the lighter, and when you tried to teach me, I wasn’t getting it.

But you were much more than just a person I worked with; you were a good friend of mine just as well. I could talk to you about anything, even when it came down to shows you never watched or books you never read, you always listed. And you always offered me great advice. You were aware of my workaholism and encouraged me to rest. I really appreciated that.

I was so sad when you told me you were moving away the day we did the Motomami shoot. But you told me, “You’re gonna be ok without me. Trust me.”

It's beyond being unable to work on another project with you; I don’t care about that right now.

It’s the fact that I can’t hug you.

I can’t talk to you, and you talk back.

When I felt like quitting, you pulled me back and pushed me to keep going.

This past summer, I watched a fantastic film called The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster. The more I think about the movie, the more I understand why she was so angry. Aside from the fact that the world is terrible to black girls (which is something I talked about with you all the time), she was so tired of everyone that she loved dying.

In 2020, I lost my grandma.

In 2021, I lost my grandad and then my mother.

In 2022, I lost two of my uncles, my auntie, and my cousin. All on my mother’s side.

In 2023, I lost you, T’Shauna, and I legit can’t stop crying about it because I keep thinking that I’m having a bad dream and haven’t woken up yet.

I’m unsure if I want to go to your viewing because I don’t want the last time I ever see you being unalive. If I don’t go, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you any less, but I can’t bear to even think of seeing you in that state.

Thank you for always being there for me. Thank you for being one of the greatest friends I have ever had. I’m gonna be okay one day, but for now, I’m not, and you always told me not to ignore how I feel about things, so I’m not gonna.

This hurts a lot. And I love you forever.

This year’s Disneycember will be made in your honor. I won’t let you down.