Thursday, February 26, 2009

When The Lights Go Out, Sometimes You Are Just Left In The Dark

This is not like the rest of the things that I put up here. This is a sad post. A truly sad post about other people's loss, people I care about. If you don't want to read about tragedy, death, and the breaking of a beautiful person, skip this one. There is a thunderstorm over Chicago right now. Somehow, it seems fitting...

A friend and coworker of mine, a joyful, attentive, an unbreakably happy woman, had to bury her husband yesterday. He dropped dead in Mexico, on vacation with her, on his way to the pool for an afternoon swim, for no real reason at all. I’m not being insensitive, that is what happened. He was walking out of the hotel and literally dropped to the ground, and then stopped living. My friend is obviously crushed, my co-workers are crushed, I am crushed, it is all very confusing. He had gotten a clean bill of health from the doctors not three weeks ago. He was very active. He ate right. He just dropped dead, in Mexico, in his bathing suit, in his 50’s.

It could happen to anyone. It could happen to you tomorrow. It could happen to me while I’m writing this. It happens all the time. Poof, you’re dead. That’s all you get. Don’t ask why cause it’s not up to you. You don’t get to figure it out. In fact, you don’t get to figure anything out ever again, ever. You are dead, for no real reason; that’s just the way it is. That's how God wants it, if you can honestly believe that God wanted this good man dead.

Maybe it should, but that doesn’t really scare me. It seems totally unfair, but it isn’t scary. In fact, it seems like one of the best ways to go. Pop. It sucks for everyone else. It sucks for my coworker; she just lost the love of her life without warning. It sucks for her children; they just lost their father for apparently no reason at all. It sucks for me, not even close to the same degree, but it has destroyed a woman who is a beckon of pearly white toothy smiles and a non-stop deluge of positive energy. It has destroyed my friend and I wouldn’t wish that upon anyone. She is suffering. She will suffer for the rest of her life. But he didn’t suffer. He didn’t waste away. He was about to go swimming. You don’t go swimming when you feel like you are dying. You go swimming when you are on vacation in Mexico with your wife and you want to spend an afternoon outside relaxing in the sunshine.

I'm going to have to post something good and happy above this so it's not staring you down at the top of the page. I should probably drop the "- or -" title humor for this one, maybe even a disclaimer before I start. No one wants to walk into a bear trap like this. There is a thunderstorm over Chicago right now. Somehow it seems fitting.


  1. Damn you. Your words are as effective as strings rising up at a painfully emotional moment in a brilliantly heart-wrenching film.

  2. Peace, my brother. From your mouth to God's ears, as they say. No such sentiment is wasted.

    Peace and all good things...