Thursday, January 20, 2011
The road less traveled
I got word of a family friend that died. He was far to young, only 22. I drove to Las Vegas for the memorial. I took a different route. I drove through Landers. The mountains were hypnotic. I'm surrounded by them everyday, but on this road they felt different. Desolate roads always lead to beautiful sightings. Even abandoned houses have a beauty about them, or maybe I am just growing emotional over the death of my friend. Death does that. It magnifies every detail of that persons life and who they were and you begin to question your own life and what you have or have not accomplished, usually becoming overwhelmed with emotion during the process.
I have come to despise Las Vegas, and going there for a funeral doesn't help. I remember the first visit. I went to see my friend, the girl with the blond hair and the huge smile. I remember seeing the lights, going into a casino for the first time. It was sensory overload, but exciting and new as well. My friend and I were close. Like sisters. We could finish each others sentences. I visited often, usually in the middle of the night if I couldn't sleep. I would arrive as the sun was coming up and she would always welcome me with open arms. She was the girl that taught me things. Some good, some bad but always fun and memorable. She was the one I told all my secrets to. She knew me well and I always looked up to her. The way she was carefree, her sarcasm, her dark sense of humor and her wit. But my friend also had a sadness about her. She did what she could to hide this sadness, but I could feel it. I knew it was there. She had lost people that she loved, and it seems to me she has never been the same. Its been about 5 years since we have spoken. I still keep in touch with her family. This is how I came upon the news of her brother dying. Another tragedy another loss for her.. We had a falling out some time ago and it feels like forever since I have heard her voice. I miss my friend. She made it known she didn't want to see me at the funeral. I promised to stay out of her way.
I saw my friend and her family sitting together. I sat in the row ahead of them. I saw a picture of Joey, her brother that died way to young. It didn't feel real. I sat up front staring at his picture listening to all his loved ones. One by one, speaking about him, about his life, his love of life, his devotion to his family and friends. And when it was my friends turn to speak, I almost walked out. She was shaking, in pain, she is fragile and has been hurt so much. Through blurs and tears I watched her and in my head I was screaming I love you Sara I love you I love you I love you...
Today I said goodbye to Joey, to the little boy I will always remember with the big brown eyes and freckled cheeks. I will miss him. I will always love his family that endured so much. The family that at one time became broken by unfortunate circumstances that left all the siblings scattered throughout different states. We all came together today to say goodbye, and although I didn't get to hug my friend, I will continue to send love her way.