So long my friend

This is the hardest post I have yet to write.  This is my dedication to a man I loved dearly, who was my friend through thick and thin and whose spirit so richly deserves to be honored. 

I have to summon the courage to go to your funeral in a few hours and say goodbye.  I’m afraid to see your body because that means you’re really gone.  I don’t want to see your body because it does not represent your spirit.  Maybe I need to see you for closure, as a part of the grieving process.  I get all that and yet I can’t believe you’re really gone. 

A light has gone out.  You were the most happy go lucky person I’ve ever met.  You led a simple life.  You taught me to live life fully and even in your death you remind me of this most precious lesson.  You loved being who you were.  You learnt a long time ago that you didn’t have to be what others wanted you to be.  You always made me laugh and smile; life was made just a little bit easier with you.   

I can’t believe you’re gone.  Your heart stopped and you died alone; you were still so young.  Were you afraid?  Did you feel pain?  Did you suffer?  I will never have answers to these questions.  I hope you knew you were loved.  You touched the lives of so many people James: your customers, my family and most of all, mine.

I’m never again going to be able to walk into the store and get a hug from you, shoot the breeze and smile.  I’m not going to be able to pick up the phone, talk to you and hear you laugh or have you plow our conversation into the ditch.  Nor will I experience the smiles, wisdom and care your texts so aptly evoked.

I am going to miss you my dearest friend.  We were best friends, we may not have spent as much time together in the past few years but I knew you were always there.  At least I thought I did.  I miss you more than words can say James.  I loved you with all my heart.  You were a good man with a kind heart.  I never saw you sad or angry.  You were the eternal salesman, always on.  You were a private man, a strong man and I guess that’s what drew me to you.

James your light may have gone out on this plane but I know it shines even brighter wherever you are.  Rest in peace my friend, your life was fully lived.  I know you wouldn’t want today to be a pity party you’d want it to be the party to end all parties.  I intend to honor and celebrate you today.  I will remember the lessons you taught me, think fondly of our happy times and know you are with me today and always.

So long my friend, till we meet again.  I love you.

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