I'm feeling a little bit melancholic this morning. Only a bit - it's ok. It was two years ago that John was diagnosed. Two years and a lifetime ago. Two years and just yesterday. The tristful look on his face as he told me is still as clear to me as if it were a snapshot sitting on my desk. After he gave me the initial news we both went silent. Truth is, I couldn't have forced words past the lump in my throat if I had tried. He looked down, then back up at me and said, "I always thought I'd go in some kind of heroic blaze of glory... defending some woman's honor, or taking a bullet for someone, yarding someone back from the edge of disaster..."
Oh, Honey... oh Baby, my darlin' sweet man... if you only knew. In my two years of wisdom later, it appears that's exactly what you did. I hope you can know that now. I hope you can understand that. In the movie As Good As It Gets, Jack Nicholson tells Helen Hunt, "You make me want to be a better man." Well, John... you made (and still do) me want to be a better woman. You (your life, your death, your love) engendered in me a woman of honor. The cancerous bullet you took, the bullet that forced me to watch your decline and your fight against it, that compelled me to understand exactly what is and isn't important in this life... the bullet you took freed me. And that freedom is a burden I willingly and joyfully carry. I think I understand its price more than most. You pulled me back from the edge, set me solid and turned my head to see the view. It's beautiful. Somehow, suddenly, I have all of the things in my life that I've always wanted and there's no doubt in my mind that you've played a tremendous part in that.
I was talking to Timothy last night and I made some raunchy crack. We both laughed and I said, "Clearly I spent way too much time with John." Timothy said, "No, you spent exactly the right amount of time with him." After we hung up, I got to thinking about their friendship, got to thinking about how much the man must miss his best friend - and probably often for the same reasons I do. Same reasons we all do. And then I thought, what a blessing to feel such a loss and what a credit to John's honor that so many people still say to me, "Y'know? I just miss the man."
This one's for you John - always makes me think of you... you were so much. "Look at the stars, look how they shine for you..."