Ricki Lake Shares Tribute to Late Ex-Husband Christian Evans on 5th Anniversary of His Death

"I am a far better version of myself having been loved so deeply by him," Ricki Lake said

Ricki Lake is remembering her late ex-husband.

On Friday, the former talk show host, 53, posted a tribute to jewelry designer Christian Evans on the fifth anniversary of his death. In an Instagram post, she shared two photos of their time as a couple, as well as a quote about twin flames. "Twin Flame relationships come into your life to help mold you to embody the vibration of unconditional love," the quote read.

Along with the photos, Lake left a touching message about Evans. "This is hard. Sigh. Today is 5 years that the world lost #christianevans 😞, " she wrote. "Going through the old photos and memories we shared during our 6 1/2 years together."

"He was and continues to be my greatest teacher. I am a far better version of myself having been loved so deeply by him. Missing Christian and honoring his memory today and everyday. ♥️ #1111," she added.

Evans and Lake were married from 2012 to 2015, though manic episodes caused by his bipolar disorder led to their eventual split. Evans died by suicide in 2017 at the age of 45, and Lake revealed the mental illness to be the cause of his death.

"It is with a heavy heart that I share that my beloved soulmate, Christian Evans has passed," she announced in an Instagram post at the time. "The world didn't understand this man, but I did. He succumbed to his life long [sic] struggle with bipolar disorder."

She added: "He was a man of love and what mends my broken heart today is knowing that he is finally at peace and his spirit is free."

Since his death, Lake has spoken openly about mental health, and advocated for those with bipolar disorders.

"I have to spread the word about recognizing this disorder and getting treatment as soon as possible," Lake told PEOPLE in 2017. "Christian didn't want to be labeled as bipolar, but he admitted he was in the note he left. That was him finally owning it. That was him giving me permission to tell his story."

Lake remarried in January to Ross Burningham. "We did it! 1/2/22 Ross and I said I DO!" she shared on Instagram. The 1988 Hairspray star told PEOPLE that her wedding day "felt biblical," adding, "It was truly one of the best days of my life."

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

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