‘Man I’d love to see that girl again’

I’ve sort of been in this bubble lately, concentrating on what’s important (as much as I can, anyway) and focusing on achieving some goals. And I’ve been doing rather well, as my inner circle can attest. And though there’s been a moderate-to-middling amount of suck on the periphery — that’s exactly where it is: out of sight, out of mind.

And then, this week happened.

We lost a friend this week. Young, vibrant, beautiful — the type you meet once or twice and know you will remember for a long time to come. The circumstances, unfortunately, seem as indecipherable as the Big Question of “Why?”

And the Big Question leads to lots (and lots) of other Big Existential Questions. Which I won’t ponder here but I’m sure you’d have a few of your own, when handed this type of information, to process in the recesses of your mind when no one else is watching you.

Nearly everyone who is touched by this senseless tragedy seems to have retreated offline, into their own heads. And I’ve stayed about as quiet as I could. I admit, I’m wrecked. Color me 14 shades of fucked-up right now. I cry for her, for her love, for everyone affected even in the smallest way.

To say I’ve been rendered relatively useless this week is to understate the issue, oh, just a tad. I mean, you get your personal days and time to grieve when it’s a blood relative. But when it’s anyone else, you have to suck it up and think in your own time.

And that’s when you realize, wow, it’s all my time. And am I truly using it effectively and, more important, pleasingly?

I scrawled a hardly coherent journal entry the day I found out. I wish I could share it here. I really do. I said what might be the most profound thing to come out of my mouth (pen?) in the past 30-odd years.

The simple truth behind it was, in my panic, I saw very clearly what matters to me. The one thing I simply cannot leave unresolved when it’s my time to go. Not that I’d be ready to go at any time — there’s still so much more I expect to do before I even think about being through.

But if my number were up in five minutes and I could do one last thing? I know exactly what it is.

Of course, whether or not I would do it is anybody’s guess. I would have, when I had the thought. But right this very minute? Not so sure. New information and all that jazz. The stuff that’s probably kept it exactly where it’s been, all this time.

The clarity, however, struck me. The “this is what I should be doing” thing nearly knocked me over when I read over what I had written. I don’t even remember writing it. I just remember calling my BFF and saying, “This is what just came out of me.” Rendering her speechless, too, for the record.

I can’t help but feel that this devastating, devastating loss is meant to mean something to us … to all of us … in the grander scheme of things. Moreover than the usual, “Life is fragile and transient” business.

Yeah. Got that. Heard ya.

But I wondered how, a dozen years from now, this sadly significant time will have affected me. What choices will I have made that I otherwise wouldn’t have? What will I have done to honor this lovely young woman by the way I’ve lived my life or loved someone else — because I was lucky enough to be able?

3 Responses to ‘Man I’d love to see that girl again’

  1. Lachlan :


    You know where I am if you wanna talk.

  2. Caterwauling :

    […] Four years later, I got that moment of clarity. […]

  3. Caterwauling :

    […] Six days without my Maddie and an ocean of tears later, I just wanted to send a little prayer out there for another “gone too soon” friend, as Leanne left us a year ago. […]