Thirty years ago today, my life took a dramatic turn that changed everything.
It was a Sunday morning, and I sat up in bed as the phone rang. No one was home, and I somehow knew it was not good news. I picked it up to hear a voice tell me that my best friend in the world, Paul, was dead. The next few hours are a blur, and honestly, the next few weeks.
I am not writing this for sympathy, time has turned the open wound into a scar, and the pain is only felt in specific moments of reflection. Instead, I am writing this as a reminder. The last time I saw my friend was July 28, and we did our usual routine in those days. We went to a bow range and shot our hunting bows, went to grab a bite to eat, and then parted ways. As he walked through the “Just Right” hamburger restaurant parking lot, little did I know I would never see him again.
The hard truth of life is that one day the people you love the most will be gone, and you will feel a pain that you cannot completely describe. You will miss their stupid comments, strange behavior, and the unique things that made them one of a kind. You would give anything to hear their voice and have one more conversation. All those things that used to drive you crazy will be gone, and you will desperately want them back.
My one thought for today is the most basic life lesson. Pause in the chaos of today and tell someone how much you love them. One time I read a line that has stuck in my head, “Send flowers to the house and not the funeral home.” It was an article extolling people to do something nice while people are alive. All the good intentions in the world mean little after someone you love is gone. Make today special because we are not promised tomorrow. When tomorrow does not come, you will spend the rest of your life regretting not doing more today. I hope that you would live a life with no regrets.