Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Time and Loss.

Time is a funny thing.  You always think you will have more of it.  Well, at least I do.

Maybe it is wanting more time during the day to get your work done or spend with your family.

Or perhaps more time to get your chores/errands done.

Maybe more time on the weekends to do all the things that need done vs. those things you want to do.

Or more time to see those that you care about the most.

I am always looking for more time.  But that is what tomorrows are for, right?!  That is what I have always said.  Oh, I didn’t get to XYZ today….I will do it tomorrow…or next week….or next month….

But again, time is a funny thing and sometimes, completely out of the blue when you think there is plenty of time left, the reality smacks you right in the face that there is just no more time left.

I write this post for myself as a memory.  A reminder of just how precious time is.

On May 26th, a dear friend of mine passed away.  He was FAR too young and only 35.  He has a wife and two beautiful daughters (3 years and 3 months). 

He had just very recently been diagnosed with Leukemia.  He was fighting Leukemia and doing really well but was going through some intense chemo.  He was at home in between chemo treatments and caught an infection.  A flipp’n cold.  But with such a weaken immune system his body couldn’t fight it off and it spread fast.  He passed away Monday, May 26th

To say this was a shock is an understatement.  Yes, he was fighting Leukemia, but he was doing great.  This all happened so fast, being diagnosed and passing was all in a span of a couple months.  He had just written a post on FB a week before about how excited he was to be home and spend some time with his family and cookout for the holiday weekend.


Just a few weeks before I kept thinking “I need to send him an email or talk to him”.  Then I would think “Oh, I will do it later, and when I go home in June I will defiantly go see him….if I have time”.

If I have time.

But there is no later.  There is no time left.  When I go home this week he will not be there.

His death has impacted me in a different way.  First, he was a friend.  He was MY age.  He has kids….oh this breaks my heart the most.  They will never know their father, except through stories, and they will never know all the kindness he had in his heart and for those he loved.  Luckily he was loved by SO many and there are lots of stories.  But still, they will not know HIM.  I think because it was someone I cared about who is also my age, it is very relatable.  The sadness of him not being here and the sadness for the family he was just starting.  My heart aches for his family.

People who have passed in my life have been grandparents, and that has not been easier…just different.  I rationalize their passing with “well they lived a long life” or “he was really sick and now he is not in pain any more”.  I mourn them, still mourn them.  But they are at peace and it comforts me.  You know that your grandparents will go some day, and while saddened by the loss it is easier to accept.

But Rick, I have yet to be able to rationalize why he is no longer here.  He was only 35….he had plenty of life left.  Yes he was sick, but he was getting better.  In my mind, there is no reason why he shouldn’t be here.  It is hard to accept this reality and why he is gone.

His death has given me some doubts and made me question things.  I think all deaths do though in different ways.  When my papaw passed away last summer that was tough and I questioned if I got to spend enough time with him and questioned life in general.  But papaw was also very sick and when we went home a month before he passed for his 80th birthday (something I am so thankful we did) you could tell he wasn’t his same ornery self.  He didn’t feel well and was tired of fighting.  When I saw him and how his body was shutting down I knew, though didn’t want to admit, that something was different.

But the doubts now reflect Rick and my friendships.  I mean, I have never met his daughters.  HOW COULD I HAVE NEVER MET HIS DAUGHTERS AND HE NEVER MET HENRY?!?!?!  Our kids would have gotten along.  Why could I not find time to see him.  Why didn’t I just send him an email to let him know I was thinking of him instead saying I would do it tomorrow?  Why didn’t I make more of an effort instead of just liking a FB status or leaving comments?!?!  Did he really know I was thinking about him?!?!

He was one of my best friends growing up.  We drifted apart a bit when I went to college and a little more when I started dating Terry and then he started dating Heather and then as we both began families.  He was someone I hadn't seen in a while because our lives just got busy.  But the love was always there.  A love that you share with someone who has been a friend to you for nearly 20 years.  He was loyal and kind and he was one of those people I knew would always be there for me no matter what and I the same.  He always put everyone else before himself, because that made him happy to see those he loved happy.  I assumed we had more time.....

(One of the two years we went to prom together)

I see pictures of family and friends and know what is going on with them, but am I making enough of an effort to be involved in their lives?!?!  I don’t know.  Do they know how much I care about them and think about them, even if I don’t always call or say it?!?!  Perhaps.

And none of these questions I ask myself take away the pain of loss when that person is gone, nor does it make you feel better for not making more of an effort over the years.

I know this post is rambling, and if no one reads it that is fine.  I am trying to rationalize all this in my head.  Understand that he is not here anymore. 

He is gone.

There is a hole in my heart.  I miss him.  I thought he would be around a lot longer and we would have time to hang out more and our kids could hang out.


It is all so unpredictable, and it seems the older I get the more this reality hits me.  Between this or hearing about and seeing family/friends who have loss those close to them….it seems now more than ever, that I am recognizing just how precious time is. 

If I take anything away from this, besides the emptiness of loss, it will be to cherish those I love.  To make the most of the time I do have.  And to never miss an opportunity to let those around me know I am thinking of them. 

I love you and miss you Rick.  

 (Details on ways you can give to the educational fund set up for Rick’s two girls are included in the link. Monetary donations, as well as an online benefit auction are available. 100% of all donations go to their future education. MEMORIAL BENEFIT AUCTION FOR RICKY'S GIRLS) LINK HERE

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