Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Finality of It...

It has been a little over a year since I received news that my best friend from high school and college had committed suicide.  I was there when his brother was married (wow was that a fun night). He was there for me through some really hard times.  We could go months without seeing each other and it be like only minutes had passed.  To this day, I can still say that I loved Matt.  I will always love him.  There are people who enter your life and no matter what, you can and will always love them.  Matt was/is one of those people...He was one of the "good guys"!

Yesterday, his older brother Marc sent me a picture of his grave stone.  It brought tears to my eyes.  Sitting at my desk at work I cried.  Cried because it makes it so final. 

I hadn't talked to Matt since one day early in 1995 when I called him from Japan to see how he was doing and tell him I would be home later in the year and he informed me that he had gotten married. I was shocked.  I didn't know.  It definitely was not what I expected to hear.  But as much as my heart broke, I was happy for him. He and his wife were expecting their first child later that year.  But I knew at that moment that my best friend was gone.  I had to back away.  I couldn't call him anymore.  Gone was my reason to leave the Navy. So I lost contact with him.  Over the years I thought of him often, thought of his family and wondered how they were all doing.  You see, where I come from, even if you aren't family, you are family.  We were a close community.  With the invention of Facebook, I looked for him every once in a while and asked our mutual friends about him but was never able to find him.  But I was afraid. I was afraid to reach out to this family that I loved so much.  There were times when I wanted to call his Mom and see how he was doing but I didn't want to interrupt his life.  We were close once. Closer than most friends.  We had a very special and unique relationship.

So news that he had ended his life hit me hard.  I wasn't able to get to his funeral service but I prayed for his family, his kids, his brother, his parents.  I still pray for them.  I pray that somehow they find peace that he wasn't able to find in this life.  I pray they know and remember that he DID love them.

When I saw the gravestone, it made his death final.  Like somehow this was just a bad dream and now it's actually true. I cannot imagine what those closest to him must have felt and still feel to this day. His brother. His parents. His kids.  His family.  His friends. I know they ALL miss him terribly.

Matt, you are still loved. You are sorely missed.  And I pray that you have found the peace that elluded you at the end of your time on this earth.  Please know I will never forget you, the band trips, the classes at Conner and NKU, the Ecology class when you had to take me home because I fell in the nasty pond and you were forced to meet my doberman(I told you she wouldn't hurt you).  I will never forget your smile, your laugh and your eyes.  I will always smile at the memory of the day you came through the door of Prime 'n Wine after Marc & Heather's wedding/before the reception in your tuxedo...my prince in a tux...you made me feel like a princess that day...and thinking back to that day, I can still smile at the memory. I was blessed to be a part of your life, even if for a short time. Thank you for giving me your friendship. I will cherish those times forever.

Rest in peace dear friend. Rest in Peace.
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