After losing one of my oldest and dearest friends this week, I have been beside myself with grief. We had just spoke the day before and made plans for dinner the next night. It was unbelievable that suddenly he would no longer be there to visit, come for dinner, laugh during our long phone conversations or continue our old fashioned routine of sending letters back and forth to each other.
It seems as if we have gone through a great many losses the past few years--friends, family, and even those who have decided, for whatever reason to estrange themselves from us. Each of those have left holes in my heart--similar to a slice of Swiss cheese.
But when Mike died, it hit hard and fast, like a slug to the gut. It was as if I wasn't sure I could go on, or really, wanted to. At his funeral, lines upon lines of visitors came by to share with his brother and sisters, the remarkable man their brother was and how much he meant to them all. Each had a story or three to share with them, bringing a much needed chuckle beneath their tears.
After we arrived home and the memories of our 25 year friendship flooded my mind--I realized that he would always be a part of my life, no matter if he were a phone call or a prayer away. His life was never meant for this world alone--none of our lives are. He lived for this end--a new beginning in heaven-for his reunion with Jesus.
While it will take a long time to remove his name from my speed dial, or to resist sending him a note--I know that all I have to do is talk to him and he is there listening and being the supportive friend he has always been.
It is comforting to know that he is dancing with the angels, visiting with his beloved parents and brother, and hopefully, laughing with my Mom and Dad. And I am grateful for many lifetimes of wonderful memories with him--I have not a single bad memory of our friendship and that is a rare commodity, these days.
Bless you my friend. Your earthly suffering is over and I am sure that Our dear Lord is saying, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant." I love you Mike, I always have--you were a brother to me and a best friend. Please pray for us now, OK?