This morning I woke to the news that a lifelong friend had died. It wasn't a surprise, as I had been over to see him just days ago. He still had a little fight left in him, but cancer was just too much. Cancer claims nearly 600,000 people a year. My friend, however, will never be a statistic.
He chose to fight cancer in order to see his nieces and nephews accomplish great things. He chose to fight cancer because he had more to do. In the end, though, we will all die. It just wasn't supposed to happen this soon.
He loved his family and friends. He taught me and our circle of friends more about life, laughing and love in the past five years than we had shared together in our lifetimes. When, just years ago, "Love you, brother," would never had been thought of as a proper or common end to a conversation or visit, today, it's the ending words of nearly every telephone call or face-to-face conversation with a friend.
With that in mind, seek out those you love and tell them you love them. Hug them, hold them, let them understand what they mean to you. If you have a torn relationship, try to fix it. If you are someone's child, and your relationship with your parents isn't good, you should work to fix it. You will never get them back once they're gone. Don't withhold your kids from their grandparents. Short of criminal abuse, that is unjustifiable.
If you have lost touch with a friend or loved one, reach to them. Just letting them know you're thinking of them can make a great difference.
Meanwhile, to my friend, who is sitting in heaven and laughing with his father, I love ya brother, I'll miss you until I see you again. And until then, I'll have a Miller Lite for you.