I wasn't going to say anything. Everyone loses people they love. But the closer it gets to 5 pm, the closer it gets to the memorial I have to go to as I have to say goodbye to a dear, funny, kind friend. And I don't want to go. I dread it. But I have to.
I have to comfort his family. I have to support his wife. I have to hold back the tears, knowing I won't. And then when it's over, I have to erase all that as I rush to a band parent meeting at the high school. So no tears, no sadness. Just parenting a child who needs me.
Saying goodbye is hard enough. Saying goodbye because he wouldn't stop smoking is devastating. It's agonizing. He would still be here if he would have stopped.
But he didn't. He smoked when he was told he needed to stop for health reasons. He smoked when he was on oxygen and he burnt his face. He smoked before he died.
For all you who play at quitting, this is what your loved ones may have to look forward to. For all you struggling to take that final step towards quitting, this is what your loved ones may write. For all you teetering on the verge of relapse, this is what we may be saying about you. Not pretty. Not nice. No positive vibes from me this afternoon. Just anger. And a deep, heartbreaking sorrow that he is gone.
I hate this. I dread this. And it didn't have to be this way so I am angry and sad. Don't let it happen to you.