'Eat, Pray, Love' author Elizabeth Gilbert's partner and best friend Rayya Elias dies after battling cancer

Rayya Elias was the author's best friend of 15 years.

“I loved you so much, Rayya,” she continued. “Thank you for letting me walk with you right to the edge of the river. It has been the greatest honor of my life. I would tell you to rest in peace, but I know that you always found peace boring. May you rest in excitement. I will always love you.”

Gilbert first revealed on Facebook in 2016 that she had left her husband Jose Nunes and detailed how she fell in love with Elias.

"In the moment I first learned of Rayya's diagnosis, a trap door opened at the bottom of my heart (a trap door I didn't even know was there) and my entire existence fell straight through that door," Gilbert wrote then in 2016. "From that moment forward, everything became about HER. I cancelled everything in my life that could be cancelled, and I went straight to her side, where I have been ever since."

In June 2017, the two held a "simple and spontaneous ceremony of love," Gilbert said on Instagram, noting that it wasn't legally binding.