Yesterday, I found out that a close family friend had died. This is coming off the heels of losing my son just over three weeks ago. And although I wasn’t as close to him as my brother was, I still viewed him as yet another brother in my family.
Robbie was one of the best people I ever knew. He was the type of guy that would literally give his shirt off his back if you were cold. Always there for my brother, he was loyal, caring and the first to dive headfirst into danger.
When my son committed suicide, he tried to get as much information he could to find out what happened.
And to be honest, it all seems so surreal. Just as I was getting some semblance of getting it together after losing my son, fate smashes me with a sledgehammer to stay down.
The Man I Knew
Rob was one of the best things that ever happened to my brother. No matter how bad things got, he was always there as the rock to keep my brother stable. And for that alone, Robbie made an impression on my heart.
We’ve spent the last two decades playing online games, on and off, such as Star Craft and Day Z. We partied during birthdays and cried went things went south.
I wish I got to spend more quality time with the man. He was such a positive influence.
Even though he took apart the engine of my car to “fix” it and left a mess behind, which I never drove it again, I held no animosity towards Robbie. Sure I was mad at first, but things like that do not discredit the amazing person he grew into.
Why I Am Taking Everything So Hard, Lately
When someone has a terminal illness or has reached a certain age, death is a fact of life that you can adapt to overtime. As callous as it might sound to some, you have time to focus on what matters and adjust to losing that person.
But when someone dies from an impulsive suicide or shoots themselves accidentally, it’s much more difficult. You don’t have that time to spend with the person…to make sure you spend as much time as possible before he or she goes.
So, I start with feeling guilty that I didn’t get to spend more of my life with those who I’ve lost.
Then, you add in the fact that both of my recent losses were caused by elements that were preventable.
Granted, my son was always a bit impulsive and did things often without thinking. But, he could have reached out before jumping in front of the train.
And then Robbie, who knew better than to try to clear a shell from a chamber while pointing the gun at himself. He should have put more thought into what he was doing and the danger it posed.
Both situations could have been prevented.
Yes, accidents happen and life goes on. But to lose two people in my life within a single month is quite a bit to move past. And this is just three months after we lost another family friend from a heart attack.
Needless to say, my family has taken a beating in 2019.
Trying to Keep My Head Above Water
It’s hard enough as a parent to adjust to life without a child. You have a gaping hole in your heart that will never heal. And then to lose someone you viewed as a brother inside the same month adds to the feeling of despair.
Will this drive me to do something “stupid?” No…not really. Even if life wants me to tap out of the fight, I’ll still stand back up. And to quote a superhero who has inspired me lately, “I can do this all day.”
But, it’s getting harder to get back up.
How I Am Adapting
I am a writer.
Not only is it a way to bring in a paycheck, but it also helps relax me in times of stress and sorrow. So, I will work on blogging more as well as finishing up some stories I had been working on.
It’s all about finding constructive ways to deal with issues you might have. For me, it’s creating new content, whether it’s a tutorial or some new fictional piece.
But if you don’t have some kind of constructive outlet, it’s easy to focus on the dark and negative aspects of life. Once you start down that path, you find it far more difficult to move onto an easier and more pleasant road.
Yes, there are times when I crack and begin crying as I miss the people I’ve lost. But I need to get back up on my feet and keep walking. Otherwise, I could find myself in a far darker place.
Although my heart is filled with guilt for not spending more time with those in my life, I can’t let that control my actions. Instead, I need to focus on the ones I do have and make sure they are always with me.
Because in mere moments, in a literal blink of an eye, you can find yourself without those you love. Then you start focusing on thoughts like, “If only I could have…” or even, “What if…”
And those kinds of thoughts aren’t good for yourself or the rest of the people you have in your life.
Cherish the ones you have while remembering the ones you’ve lost. And always remember, that no matter how much you hurt, everyone has someone they can turn to.
Adapt. Overcome. And Live.
I’m going to miss Robbie. He was a special person who was undeniable what a man should be for his family. And even though all of us have had a rough go of things, he was someone you could always rely on.
And as I sit here trying to come up with a good way to end this blog post, I find myself choked up on words. Nothing I can really say about the man would truly do him justice.
Just remember, Robbie, you left behind a lot of people who loved and cared about you very much.
Life isn’t going to be the same without you.