Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Stop and smell the flowers

Well, it's been awhile since I've posted an update. Mostly it's because I was waiting for life to return to "normal". I think enough time has passed that I'm finally realizing I'm already in a NEW normal. I am certainly not as sad anymore; at least most of the time. Something will pop up every now and then that brings tears to my eyes, but I've come to appreciate those as precious reminders. I still miss my friend Kendall, but at least I know that he will always be a part of my life.

There have been at least three good things that I can specifically point to as direct outcomes of this painful experience. The first thing is that a friend of a friend was considering a similar end, but because of things we've been posting and saying about Kendall, this person was rescued. I don't even know who this person is or the details around the situation, but if even one life can be saved, then that gives me hope for a brighter tomorrow. I can only dream that more people read these posts and find ways to reach out to others around them -- be it to ask for help or to offer help. Strengthening the bonds between us is a lofty goal in and of itself and I'm glad to be even a small part of that.

Another good thing that I have taken away from this experience is a vivid reminder of how blessed I am. I have one of the greatest families on earth and a bunch of really awesome friends. I am still receiving messages and words of encouragement, even when I least expect it. This has strengthened me so much lately and helped me face this ordeal in ways I couldn't have foreseen. I know I wouldn't be the person I am today without this network of love and support behind me, but it is nice to actually feel those bonds so distinctly from time to time.

And finally, as a result of this gloomy ordeal, I have changed some priorities in my life. My friends and family have always been important to me before, but now I have a big urge to give back. When I think about helping and interacting with people, instead of a weighty feeling of responsibility, there is now a sense of joy. I want to keep spreading this closeness and hopefully continue sharing the warmth and love that has been given to me lately. And just as those occasional bouts of tears help me to remember my friend Kendall, I hope they also continue to remind me of all the great friends and family that I have.

Thank you, Kendall, for all the fond memories and all good things you've brought into my life now. I still wish you could have stayed.