Sunday, January 25, 2015

When the Good Memories Rise to the Top

She posted this on her page

Losing someone special starts with the rage of how horrible that news is, especially since the loss of an individual who has earned that honour is so rare. A true friend really asks nothing of you other than to be their friend and when that person shares the pain they keep hidden inside, it can sometimes leave you without any response at all.

So you find ways to go forward and try to make sense out of how others near to them can ignore the calls for help and see them as just everyday complaining and excessive drama. The anxiety attacks are seen as overreaction and simply get brushed aside and the depression that person faces is mostly taken on alone. We are not trained in how to deal with that type of pain, especially in our earlier years. Many doctors continually prescribe medications for mental pain the same way they do for physical pain like fibromyalgia and migraines.

Personally, I believe most doctors are mostly just trained to give out prescriptions to keep feeding the pharmaceutical industry and it is purely a business for them. Compassion, caring and understanding are seldom ever found in a doctor’s office. The amount of time those in need wait in the “waiting room” is a prime of example of the lack of those characteristics in the medical profession. No doubt, it has a lot to do with the time and training that is required to get a license to practice medicine. It can dull your sense of consideration. Just once, I would like to meet a doctor that does more than just practice on its patients and actually get into the medical game with a full commitment. I guess those few are tied up with folks who have a lot of money.

But I have digressed once more, which seems to be quite common in my writing style. It’s time to honour the important folks I have lost over the years and you can do the same in your own way. One of the positive strengths of the human personality is its ability to find good out of bad. In order to deal with the negative parts, we look back on what made that person so exceptional—the good memories begin rising to the top.

So you find the joy you brought to each other in your times together, like the sound of someone’s laugh that comes from the toes and is like no other you have ever heard before. You remember the pleasure it gave you changing sadness into happiness by making someone laugh that hard.  You remember simple sounds or a short phrase that brought a smile to your face, like the tone my computer made when I received a chat request from her that often just said “Call me, please”. How could you ever refuse such a simple request? I never did.

Meeting someone you can truly talk to about just almost anything is so rare in today’s I-Me-Mine world and that is something I will miss the most. I truly really did not care what she wanted to talk about because we almost always enjoyed our talks together. It went from helping her with the technical side of games we played together online to what our dreams were to spiritual beliefs to all manner of life experiences. Simply stated, we were just sharing with each other. We were trying to get to really know each other like no one else I have ever known before.

But sadly, real life situations in her local surroundings started to feed the depression and I felt like someone trying to pump up an inner tube she was floating on called life, but situations, medical conditions and others were all poking small holes into that tube. Eventually, it is more than one person can do to keep the tube inflated and that truly beautiful person can tread water no more. 

And so you are left with just memories and what she would have wanted is that the good ones will always float to the top. Each day they do, but the sadness is still there for her. I can only hope that she has found the peace that she so richly deserves for what I will remember most is how a small statured person like her (5 foot one and a half inches tall) could have a heart so big with all that happened in her life. I told her several times that she must have an invisible tractor trailer to carry the rest of her heart because her body was just not big enough for all that caring.

I think tears are just the body’s way of releasing pain in a controlled manner while some would argue that they have cried uncontrollably. I think that is just a measure of releasing a lot of pain. I leave you with the first two lines of Go Rest High on that Mountain by Vince Gill. (Music has always been a strong part of my makeup even if I don’t perform it that well but it really helped during this sad period).

I know your life on earth was troubled,
Only you could know the pain

And I wish that you will Go Rest High on that Mountain, girl. I have been blessed having known you and so have so many others that you may not think have felt that way. You filled up the room on your entrance and that is what I remember most about our first meeting. I had to get to know you and it was so worth it.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A Tribute to Bandit

Well you told me I should write more, but frankly, I was tied up for the last few months trying to do something much more important and that was to help you Bandito, someone who went through life under-appreciated by those that were near to you (Your Mother being an exception and restricted by her own health issues).

And I’m not really worried about who reads this since most people don’t read much anymore and I only write about what is important to me and you are most definitely in that category, little one. I will direct the post to a few that might like to read it though and you know who those are. I am really long-winded about things that are important to me so that will stop most everyone from reading to the end.

I met you online just 5 months ago (yes it was only five months) and I will most definitely remember our first phone conversation in fondness, not the content, because I truly did not understand a single word you said. Your drawl on that day was like a 12 on a scale of 1 to 10 for me!! But I am thankful we persevered and worked it out (and my own drawl was getting to about a 7 or 8 I think). And finding out later that you gave me your number by mistake (since you thought I was someone else in the game we played together online) was just as it should be.

And even funnier was your laughter (in like the 3rd call) when I admitted that I thought “What the heck am I getting myself into”. You have a laugh like no other I have ever heard and it was wonderful to hear you do that even though it was that pleasant painful type. I cannot explain the laugh. You can’t really put that combination into words and do it justice.

And thus began a series of conversations where you shared your life experiences with me in your most honest and direct fashion, a quality that I truly respected in you and I did my best to return that honesty in all our conversations, be they on the phone or in the various chat windows we used online. Sometimes they did need translation or clarification since we really did speak somewhat different languages even though they both are called English.

And I was just so amazed at how someone could go through so many hardships in life and still bring joy to the room, always trying to help others and looking for the positive in everything. I made a commitment to try to make you happy and it was working for a time. I sensed the joy when you would try to embarrass me in the game by calling me Stuffy Wuffy in front of other game friends. It did embarrass me to a point but it made me smile since it was sort of a badge of honour you were bestowing on me and no other, like all the times you called me friend in such a meaningful manner.

I joked about how that beep in Facebook you get when someone pops up in chat there would haunt me in my grave, but the truth it was something I looked forward to hearing. We made each other’s day better and it was doing so very well. We both were running out of tail feathers with all the laughter we provided for each other (lmtfo = laugh my tail feathers off) which was your unique way of showing your joy.

And then something changed. You got more physical pain than normal and with it came more emotional pain as well. All those medications you had prescribed to you by your doctors weren’t working as they should and others around you were making it worse. It started with a battle with a former friend of yours and I experienced what you went through in a panic attack and I helped you through it as best I could.

And then came your birthday, US Thanksgiving and Christmas. All did not provide what you wanted with the exception of what I sent you as a gift for your birthday. Thankfully you called me from your Mom’s house then because you disappeared from our contacts for several days and had me really worried. It pleased me to hear you telling your Mother that I am talking to my Canook friend, not my sister, do you think I would be this happy talking to her? But is also saddened me that your family did not show appreciation and your son and Mother didn’t understand the gifts I sent until you explained the meaning behind them. They were just symbols of the person you are and who you wanted to become. I took pride in the fact that they were digital creations done by me and transformed into photographic art of sorts, just for you. And you were so happy in that time on Thanksgiving; the little girl excitement was in your voice again.

And then you returned back to the house where you resided and it changed when you got the phone call from your other son who was now 17 and you had not seen since he was 6. Losing that custody battle was so unfair for you and did irreparable damage. And when you asked him to come to his Grandmother’s and Grandfather’s house for Christmas to see them and see his brother again, he was non-committal and you became suspicious that his father (your ex) was up to something as he was so many times with you before.

And so you did not go to your Mother’s house for Christmas and were by yourself and we talked very little through that and New Years and it affected me as well. I was not my usual supportive self with you and was disappointed that I could do nothing to really help. The conversations got more one-sided and I was listening to all the things that were hurting you now and it was draining me and I did not know what to do to make it better so the conversations were not as good as they were before.

And then they stopped. I thought it was like Thanksgiving and you would appear when you were ready. I checked your posts for activity and then I saw a big red rose and a post saying that you had passed away and you were no longer with us. I was crushed. I had failed you. I had to piece together what happened by reading the obituary and all the posts that people made sharing their sadness for your loss. I know I will never truly know what was going through your mind that night but I know your heart was broken and your depression took you down your final road.

I can take some comfort in knowing you believed that you went to a place where you would want for nothing and never feel pain again because you endured more than any one person should ever had in one lifetime. If you measure beauty on more than just outward appearance (and the older photographs of you show you were that for sure) you will go down as the most beautiful woman I have had the pleasure of knowing in my lifetime. And I hope that the Internet connection in heaven is a good one and not like the one at your Mom’s house and you get to read this.

I know I was not there for you in your final hours on Earth as I should have been for I too was suffering some from the post-holiday crappers and I will be forever sad that I could not do something to help you. It was out of my power now. I ran out of band aids to fix all the wounds you had.

And so on the day of your funeral I wore out my computer and piano playing Go Rest High on That Mountain which you shared with me months ago as your wish to have it played at your funeral. I do hope the people who were at your actual funeral got the message as to why you were no longer with us. People need to be loved and need to know that they are appreciated for who they are and what they did for you.

I will change the words that Vince Gill wrote (so very well) as I sing them to you.

I know your life on earth was troubled
Only you could know the pain
You weren’t afraid to face the devil
You were no stranger to the pain

Go Rest High on that Mountain
Girl your work on earth is done
Go to Heaven a shoutin’
Love for the father and the son

And every January 6th (the day you left us), I will continue to do that on what I will now call “Appreciation Day” to honour your memory. The many heartfelt condolences that I got to read on your Facebook page and in the game, are all testaments to the impact you had on others. You were appreciated more from afar than you were from near and that is just so wrong.

I would urge anyone reading this to maybe take that day and do something that you think is appropriate and show someone that you truly appreciate who they are and what they do for you.

Go rest high on that mountain, girl. I will miss you always. My biggest regret is never to have met you in person or to touch or hug you. But it was all worth it.