Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Am I Unlucky?

I'm going to venture away from my usual posts about fitness and running and delve into something more emotional and personal. So bear with me.

On April 29, 2003, my husband and I lost a very good friend of ours. His name was Dan. He was 30 years old, had been married less than one year, and had an aggressive and deadly form of cancer called Ewing's Sarcoma. Diagnosed at age 28, he lived for less than 2 more years. We struggled with him as he would get good news, and then bad news, as he hurriedly married his sweetheart for fear he would die before they had a chance to be husband and wife, and then we got the phone call from him that he would probably die within the week. We prayed, we cried, we yelled about the unfairness of it all. We traveled to his hospital in Southern California (we lived in Northern California at the time), hoping we'd make it in time to give him one last hug. We did, and it was incredibly difficult to leave his hospital room knowing we'd never see him again.

Dan on his wedding day -May 3, 2002

I think about him all the time. I miss his goofy laugh and his funny stories. I miss his bear hugs (he was 6 foot 5). I miss his friendship and his beautiful heart. I miss being pissed off at him when he drank too much and turned into a teenager again. There aren't a lot of people that come into your life who you know will be there into old age, and when those people are taken so soon it's gut wrenching.

But he's not the only person I've lost in my life. As I look back, it seems like every year, or close to it, someone who I love dies. Sometimes it's expected and a part of the circle of life, like when my grandparents passed away, but sometimes it's sudden and painful and the worst thing in the world, like when my sister suddenly died.

And in all honesty, I think I've had more than my fair share of loss. In my life, I lost a childhood friend at age 6 (to cancer, and I remember it VIVIDLY), a high school friend our senior year (car accident), 3 grandparents (my other grandparent died before I was born), my great grandma, my friend Dan, several uncles, neighbors, and Greg has lost 2 of his grandparents and a teenage cousin since I met him. Our neighborhood has suffered terrible loss as well, with 2 children and young mom dying in recent years. Like I said, we can't go much longer than a year without another loss happening.

I'm just SAD.

Is this more than the normal person? I'm only 39 years old. There will be a lot more loss in the coming years. I'm probably crazy for dwelling on it, but on a day like today it's very difficult to get out of that rut.


  1. ((((HUGS)))) I wish I had some profound words of comfort, I wish I could take away the sadness and promise you there would be no more. I like to think that the time I shared with friend's who have passed away was a gift, and not view it as something that was taken from me too soon. I TRY to view it as though it was made that much more special because of the good memories I do have. It's hard though not to grieve often, and there are days when it just seems so much harder than others.

  2. It's so hard, isn't it? I'm sorry you're sad, Steph. But...I don't think it's a bad thing to take a little time to let yourself be sad especially around the anniversaries of their deaths. I feel the same way on Thanksgiving (which, coincidentally, is *possibly* the same death you're referring to above when you say "young mom" in your neighborhood) and on several other days. The sadness just means that they touched your life. Hang in there.

  3. [HUG]
    It seems trite to say it is better to have loved and lost then never loved at all, but you're life is richer for having known these folks and although it hurts to lose them, you were luckier to have them in your life. Although it DOES seem like a pile-on when you feel like you are constantly losing folks that are too young and too good and perfectly healthy right up until they are not, I suspect it has more to do with the anniversary of the lost of Dan that making you dwell on your other loses and making it all seem so unbearable. I'm so sorry that you are going through this pain.
    [So HUG again]

  4. We live in a broken world, one that is plagued by illness, tragedies, disappointments and suffering. Our only hope (not to sound too much like Princess Lea calling out to Obi Wan) is to find peace in Jesus. Sin entered our world just after creation. This world has been and will continue to be imperfect until the last days. We find hope and comfort in knowing that in Christ, our lives are eternal and this world we live in today is just our temporary home. I’m tearing up now as I write this because I also miss Dan dearly as he was my best friend. I know that He was a man of God and that God had plans for him far greater than what he could accomplish on Earth. I will always miss him, but take comfort in this. As recorded in Jeremiah 29:11, our Lord promises, “ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. The future to which he is referring is the one that we will spend in eternity with our Heavenly Father.