I just got an email which just kicked me in the guts. My little baby cousin Tye would have been turning 17 this Saturday....
I say 'little baby cousin' because he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma cancer and passed away shortly after his 3rd birthday.
And to think that he would be turning 17 this week! To think that I could have been taking him out, sneaking him a few beers and talking about hot chicks! But unfortunately he was taken from us.
We can always say someone is 'taken' before their time...and on the converse that they 'did so much during their (short) time on this planet'. But are those merely moot cliches?
I know that I loved that kid. He was amazing. Almots 'buddha like'. Big blue eyes that you could get lost in, and find yourself in awe at the depth of understanding someone so young could have. A love for life and an open, infinitely compassionate love for those around him. I guess when death is staring you in the face day after day you take life and squeeze it for all it's got, and you love like there's no tomorrow....There isn't.
And it's hard to sit here in Vancouver, seperated by thousands of miles from my family - the ones who loved Tye as much as I did (and still do).
I know that losing Tye and others; friends and family, has made me appreciate life so much more - because it's so transitory. In a heart beat those most close to you can be torn from your life, and you from theirs. And I guess it's made me love more fully, more totally and with less regard for loss. Let's face it, at some stage we lose everyone we love - through break ups, or death...so the only thing we can do is appreciate the people with us in the moments that we have them near.
But it doesn't make the loss any easier. There is not a day that I wouldn't give everything I have ever done and achieved for but one fleeting moment with my Mum, or with Tye, or with Grandad.... I like to think at least that their souls have been released and are free, but together. I don't know - but it's a nice thought.
I'll still have that beer with my cuz this weekend. He won't be with me in body, but he's always with me, in my heart and on my shoulder. That amazing kid who's destiny was like the brightest stars that burn out, rather than fading away.
Love you Cuz, and to all the fam back home Love you always.