He was once a stallion, strong with a chiseled jaw and tall stature, now well past his mid-80’s and considerably withered. My ears were playing tricks on me because I thought he said, “We don’t have a Costco in Heaven.” No one in ear-shot looks surprised, leaving me no clue as to what was really said.
A smile parts my lips and I feel the tears well. I selfishly stifle my emotions so that no one will see, realizing that I feel a measure of comfort knowing there’s no Costco in Heaven. It’s a private moment in a busy day.
The holidays rip at me, I want time to stand still so that I may mourn and gnash my teeth and wallow, I know that is not the way. That the departed would be ill honored by such shallow, predictable, useless and self-serving behavior, but for my grief… Occasionally it bunches and bulges, surges and threatens to overtake me. Every loss, fresh. Once again deep, open wounds fill and bleed freely. I miss you.
Embarking on the next great adventure, seeking what is beyond the veil of this life…my mind has been on him and what might be out there ready, waiting. Will he explore heaven right now as I ponder the man whose life is too large to capture in an obituary, or even a long winded tribute. Will there be mountains to climb, how high will he go? What will marathons look like, though are those from heaven?
If you’re there when he arrives, circle ’round, find a spot then get acquainted. Expect the best story time, but you’ll have to be patient, he’s not one to boast, he’s not telling to hear his own voice.
I told you before how his days were numbered. There were weeks that stretched to months and turned into more than a year. It’s time to remember my days are numbered, each of ours are. The concept circles inside of my head to not let a doctor or a disease be the reminder I need.
Someday will come for me too.
For today and each day I am here is an opportunity at love and adventure, at discovery, at chasing my joy like a fast paced foxhunt where the fox and I both win because we are one and we played as hard and as faithful as our spirit would allow.
On the 11th of December the world got a little less light, lost some of it’s sparkle. The mantle we carry to give, to care, to do more good than bad, to forgive and to love just got heavier, our shares increased. The balance of what we are to bring: a measure of good, of light and the challenge to give more than we take grew in the wee hours of the morning when Johnny passed out of this life and into the next.
I wholeheartedly detest two things, New Years Resolutions and Valentine’s Day, so I’m not waiting until January 1st to make sure everyday I start fresh, make a mark and try to climb above it. I’m not waiting until Valentine’s Day to start spreading my love around. I love you and all your mess, your flaws, your iniquity and your bright and glorious self, your goodness, generosity and creativity. I love you.
Don’t wait, start that adventure, run that race, take that trip, fly that heart. Go now.
Good-bye for now Johnny Yu, 7/26/48 to 12/11/15. Thank-you for setting such an amazing example of love and life, generosity and the example of largeness and joy!