Monday, September 11, 2006

Mortality - a quick glance

This has been a strange year for me. I'm not old by any real stretch...sitting comfortably in my very early 30s. However, I have had to say goodbye to quite a few friends and acquaintences in this past year...friends who were near the same age as myself.

Most recently, I just got news that a very good friend of mine (my very best...and at times only) growing up died very unexpectedly and tragically. The news is something that would come out of a "dark comedy" or would be a non-fatal wound in some slapstick show.

Even though we lost touch and I haven't really spoken with him for a few years, it really hits hard. This is a friend who I spent every minute with through our summers having adventures throughout the neighborhood. We went to different schools, but during the school year, we spent the after school hours playing together. We had our favorite after school cartoons that we'd watch. We'd compete against each other for high scores in video games. Combined we had a huge collection of Star Wars, He-Man, Transformers and other action figures and we'd have huge battles and create intricate bases. We'd ride bikes up and down the road, building jumps and obstacle courses out of scraps of wood and cinder blocks. We'd go through abandoned fields looking for secret treasures. We'd create intricate stories of villains and heroes and act them out for hours on end...sometimes for days or weeks at a time.

In an ironic bit of sadness...I saw his parents at the store when I was shopping on Saturday...but I was too busy or things were too hectic/frantic...for some reason or another, I didn't go up and talk to them and find out how things were going. It wouldn't have likely made any difference in the events, but I now I get to call them totally out of the blue and give my least if I'd have talked to them on Saturday, I would feel a little closer.

Death is a strange thing. I've got religion strongly embedded in my life and I know that life goes on and there is a higher plan...but having people close to me...and close to my age...die...makes me contemplate my own mortality. Even knowing that if I die, I needn't worry about the hereafter. I still have the selfish mortal view that there is a TON I still want to accomplish here on earth...I do not want to leave my family and miss out on all the great experiences and fun times we have planned for our family...I want to be there to help raise my see and cheer on their accomplishments and give them my love and admiration.

I'm waxing sentimental now. In all likelihood, I'll still be around for many, many years...long enough to see all the great accomplishments of my kids in see them grow up and get married and have kids of their own. There are no guarantees in life...I just plan to live each day to the fullest.

To all of you out there who have kids...who are kids...who have a husband or a wife or a brother or a sister...let them know you like you like you care. Be quick to forgive, quick to give forgiveness and quick to ask for forgiveness.

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