I set forth this weekend to write myself a letter. I told myself that I’d do some soul-searching and rediscover fragments of myself that I had lost. Perhaps even reclaim those missing parts and solder them together.
Instead, I woke up to news of a pure soul shattered and flying to the farthest bits of our solar system. He talked recently of the special connection we shared – “kindred souls”, he called us. I always found him to be fragile, and I felt myself a tornado and he, a tea cup, being swept up by my impossible winds.
I wanted so badly to write a message about passing time and changes seen over the years, but he was two days away from forty when he was ripped away from us. I wish I had the right words, but to be honest, I didn’t expect to write a eulogy or an obituary.
I just wish I could have done more. He described himself as an eccedentesiast, but I must admit, more often than not, I saw the pain in his smile. Hopefully, his pain has gone now.
He was found dead in his sleep Saturday. We had been friends through the various iterations of me. We never argued because I truly believe he was too gentle to argue with me, but sometimes, I wonder if I hurt him with my bluntness. I grew up in a hostile environment: one in which we just blurted things out and dealt with the consequences later.
With an abrupt loss like this, I don’t know if I’ll ever have the closure I wish for nor am I certain I’ll properly deal with the consequences of what I’ve uttered. I said things with love but also with the intent of waking him up – not aware he’d be asleep forever soon. He shared parts of his heart with me, and though he shared a name with a plastic trash bag of broken glass shards, he was gentle. There was the spirit of a poet inside of him.
We talked a lot the weeks before his death, and he wrote me a poem. “Even in the darkest of nights and days,” he wrote of me, “I know I can rely on her always.” He called me his pretty little Italian girl and taught me to cherish the parts of myself I found ugly.
I wish I could have thanked him, and I wish I could have told him to lay down his burdens. He told me he trusted me. He told me he could cry with me. He shared positive messages of hope and ones of inspiration.
…I guess I just never expected to have to say goodbye.
I wish I could have convinced him to carry on, but I never expected to wake up one morning and find out his heart was no longer beating. We talked about getting a cup of coffee in Massachusetts and writing together. Now, I imagine he writes in the clouds and plays finger-paints with the stars.
Thanks for everything you were, and everything you continue to be, even in your passing. Every Beatles song I hear will have undercurrents of your voice singing along on the car radio with the windows down.
2 thoughts on “Goodbye, Dear Friend”
Such a tragedy. I’m so very sorry for your loss, though those are just words. He sounds like a wonderful person from your description and the world is a bit darker for his passing. Please be gentle with yourself and don’t second guess all your conversations. It seems as though he considered you a great friend. Hugs to you!!!
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Thank you so much, Jami. He was such a rare human being; he offered the world so much while accepting so little for himself. We all lost something this past Saturday when he died, whether we knew him or not. I feel like I got an opportunity to see inside his soul, but there were still so many facets of him that I did not know.
I just hold myself responsible because I was not as delicate as he deserved, but I tried to offer him the best of me. I’m just tired of ghosts haunting me and lingering over me.