Monday, December 9, 2013

Dear Steve,

Today, I went and visited a friend who is in a really bad place. It made me think of you.  So, I decided to look you up today. Thought maybe I’d finally reach out, and maybe visit. I’ve been saying that for years. Looked once or twice on the internet but couldn’t find you. I bet if I pushed hard enough, asked the right people, I could have. 

Well I found you today, at least your obituary. I feel like the worst friend ever. I loved you like a brother. You were my partner in crime. We had so many great memories. Laughing through the tears right now at how crazy we were. 

Sorry I didn’t see you the last several years. I lived overseas a while and when I got back I thought I’d look you up. I’m asking myself right now why I never really did though. I think it’s for a couple reasons. 

I couldn’t stand seeing you like that. You were actually about the only guy in my life I was semi-jealous of. There was a part of you that was larger than life. You were the party. You had so much energy it was insane. To witness that energy trapped in a mostly lifeless body was hard for me to witness. I felt like you were tortured and trying to hide it. I saw me in you, because we were so similar, and I don’t think I wanted to face the fact that something like that could happen to me too. 

The second reason is, you always asked me so many deep questions like I was your older brother. You asked me more “Why?” questions than a nagging 4 year old discovering the world. I always felt the need to have an answer for you brother. When your accident happened…I had no good answers. I rehearsed your questions and how I might respond a million times in my head over the years. Damn it, I never had a good answer. I was afraid you were going to ask me some really tough questions about God and about why. I didn’t want to let you down. I kept waiting till I had the answers before I was gonna see you. 

I see pictures of you now online. You were out and about some living your life as best as you could. How is it you were the victim and you came to terms with it; I was not, and I never did. My pride and fear kept me from enjoying years with one of my best friends. That is something I will have to carry for the rest of my life. I am ashamed. 

Just a couple weeks before your accident, we had dinner. It was the first time my wife had met you. She went on and on after dinner about how you looked like “The Rock”. It was another moment I was semi-jealous of you ;-) I think that is how I will choose to remember you. 

Jesus, can you help me redeem this sin I’ve committed somehow? I’ll burden the guilt, it’s mine. I just want to be better for it. Oh, and I know you are “The Rock”, but would you mind giving that “rock” a hug for me, and tell him I’m sorry and I miss him.