In theater we have a term called “playing the end”. It happens in “Diary of Anne Frank”—when the kids are sitting around eating strawberries, the parents are joking around the table—and there’s this sense of melancholy. We all know the Nazis are coming in the next scene. We all know it’s the last laugh of the show, the last sweet taste of fruit, the last splashing of water, the last words of the Diary. It’s a beautiful scene, yet we all play the end. That’s how I feel about this month. I’m playing the end. With every beautiful moment, I’m playing the end. My last milky kiss from Ben. My last sticky hug from Garretto.My last igneous rock conversation with Felix and sniff from Pennel-lope. My last pack of chicken to throw on the Ballou’s grill. The last coffee date with the Vargas’. My last long walk and stargazing night with Heather Hataway. My last raunchy beach convo with Dianna Lynn.My endless laughter with Denise Almazan. My last explanation of a made-up Tia word with Antonio Fiorini. My last dinner party, Sunday brunch, and Cassibile adventure. I have 27 days left with these beautiful intentional people who have become my family. And here’s to hoping I stay present and can stop playing the end—for 27 days at least!