Remembering R.E.D.

I remember March 7, 2013 like it was yesterday. I was filling my gas tank and I peeked into my car. My friend was sitting in the passenger seat on the phone with someone. I knew something was wrong by the stunned look on her face, but I didn’t think whatever it was would affect me. Bummer, I thought. Something is wrong and I probably need to take her home.

“Is everything okay? Do I need to take you home?” I asked.

“Ryan died.”

I started driving towards the mall in some weird haze and I questioned why I was even heading there.

We sat in the parking lot of the town’s mini golf place and called everyone we knew to try to get to them before they innocently opened their Facebook and saw the news. I distinctly remember reaching another friend on the phone who was driving, and telling her to pull over so I could tell her the heartbreaking news.

He was one of the greats

If anyone was going to be successful, it was going to be him. I’m pretty sure he’d be the poster child for  the perfect kid. He was a smartie and everyone liked him.

He had this charming way of busting your chops and making you feel important all in the same sentence.

Ryan was always someone that people gravitated to because he was warm and friends with everyone. I think with time we all grew up a little, but things haven’t been the same since he left. He was the glue that kept everyone together.

March 7th serves as a reminder

Every year, inevitably March 7th rolls around. Ya know, because that’s how the calendar works.

Every year I’m reminded of a dear friend who was taken too soon. Every year I’m reminded how I never committed to plans with him because I was “too busy” with college mid-terms. Every year I’m reminded of how truly short life is and how I take it for granted.

We can’t bring him back, but we can let his wonderful life serve as precious reminder about how beautiful and short life is.

We think we have time

The thing that really sticks with me is how we think we have time. That’s what I thought when I didn’t commit to movie plans with him. I thought I’d have another opportunity. Boy was I wrong. I’ve tried to internalize that will all my relationships. Say yes now, you never know what can happen. Time gets away from us so quickly and we need to cherish the important people now.

He was too young. Cancer fucking sucks.

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