Today, the thing I was dreading happened.
My parent’s and I have been planning to go visit a friend of ours. John lives…or lived… a few towns away from us, so we didn’t see him often, but we tried to go visit a few times a year. His birthday is in May and we would always go and see him around then.
This year we had originally planned to go in the beginning of May, but, of course, we let life get in the way and it just didn’t happen. The sad thing is I didn’t call him like I was planning to, just to say hi and see how he was doing.
He had been fighting cancer for a little while now. If I understood correctly, he was in remission.
Anyway, dad just got in from driving back from where he works (he works out of town and it’s a long drive) and I had been pushing all week to make plans to go and see John, so dad calls and John’s farmhand answers the phone.
John died this morning. He had just turned 75 years old.
He had been in the hospital for the last 9 days or so, so even if I had called him on Monday, like I was going to, I wouldn’t have been able to speak to him, but maybe I would have been able to go to the hospital and see him? It’s kinda moot now to wonder if I would have or not. It would have depended on the conversation I had with the farmhand. Would they have told me he was on his death bed? If so, I would have gone, but if not then what would I have done?
Anyway, it doesn’t change anything.
John’s the first person in my life that’s died, that I’ve cared about. Sure, people I have known have died before, but I’ve never had a close connection to them; I just always felt sad for all the people they left behind.
Now, I feel horrible for John and my parents and myself.
I should have called him.
I shouldn’t have waited for Dad to do it.
And I’m so sorry I hadn’t.
I’m going to live with that for the rest of my life.
Don’t procrastinate with the people you care about. It could be too late when you finally get around to it.
John, you lived well. You accomplished a lot in your time and you did it the way you wanted to. I admire you for that. You were a kind and gentle man and I will miss you very much.
Thank you for teaching me the things you did. I only wish I had time to learn more.
Good bye, Eggmiller. May you rest in peace. Love you.
PS. If reincarnation is real, come back as a bird and come find me. Lay an egg in an odd spot so I know it’s you.