There are lots of things about getting older that suck. There’s the slowing metabolism, the thinning hair, the body aches, the extra weight, and the loss of friends and family.
Today I am painfully reminded of how much loss becomes a part of life as you grow older. For some, loss can be a part of your life throughout. But for most, as you grow older it’s just a natural part of a mature life.
As I was eating my lunch today and catching up on personal friends on Facebook, I was messaged by a classmate from my high school. He asked me if I had heard about one of our classmates passing away.
We’re 42, not 72.
It turns out this classmate of ours – the picture of good health – just died suddenly. We weren’t close friends in high school but hung around mutual friends a lot. I had not seen him much since high school but that didn’t take the sting away. He was there during that time. The time when we all came of age wandering the beaches and streets of sunny San Diego’s north county coastline. Those days that seem just a year ago but really are almost 30 years ago. All the stories and great times I tell friends about now during those days, this guy was there. We have a shared experience and when someone from that small group leaves us, it leaves a hole for us all.
I can still remember Bruce’sÂ distinctiveÂ laugh all these years later. Jovial, and very Southern California-like, he was a good guy then and, by looking at the lovely family he leaves behind, he was an even better man later on. My pain is for his kids and wife. We all pray for them and remember them during this difficult time.
At times like this, you say to yourself: “Damn it, why didn’t I keep in touch with all these folks.” The reality is, life gets busy and life moves on past our glory days even for those we care for. Because I hadn’t seen or spoken to Bruce all these years, doesn’t take away from what we expereinced together. Don’t be mad for not keeping up with those we lost. Be glad for the time you shared with them no matter how long ago it may have been.
Rest in Peace Bruce…I’ll see you on the other side.