Wednesday, June 04, 2008
I know you won't be reading this letter, but it's more just a vehicle for me to express my feelings about you than anything else.
Kanval will be reading this letter at your funeral tomorrow.
Rick, I'm so sorry, but I just can't bring myself to go. I spoke to Rosemary yesterday, and she understands why.
Devinder, Jerry, Ashley and Graham are representing me and the kids tomorrow. They have been such a great support to me.
I want everyone to know that not attending your funeral has nothing to do with the separation that has existed between us for so long and our inability to find our way back to each other.
It has everything to do with the deep pain I feel from losing you.
Rick, I'm afraid I'm just going to break down there in front of everybody.
I'm having trouble grasping the fact that you're gone and I'll never see you again.
The pain I feel now is the same deep and excruciating pain I felt when Dad died. I never thought I'd feel this way again with anyone else.
I spoke to Rick Green tonight. He called and we reminisced. I've been able to give brief facts about you to strangers, but talking to Rick tonight was the first time that I've been able to really talk about you without breaking down.
Rick Green asked me if I remembered ... and listed off a bunch of your friends.
I laughed, and said I remembered each as clearly as if it was yesterday.
We laughed about the rope swing you guys had that you used to swing over the creek behind Rick Green's house, and the times you guys used to tease us, that friendly, brotherly teasing of all the little sisters, some of whom were my friends.
Poor Kim and her braces. The nickname "tin grin" just seemed to stick. And for a while, anyone who called the house asking for me got a chuckling response, "Sorry, she broke a leg, and we had to shoot her." My nickname went from Medusa to Mungie depending on the mood.
Talking to Rick Green, your childhood friend, and a member of your group of close childhood friends brought back a flood of pleasant, warm memories like the ones I've already mentioned.
There are a lot of them. Way too many to go into in this letter to you.
Lois, one of my childhood friends, sent me an email the other day and talked about how you used to come to her work place and talk and how she enjoyed the conversations she shared with you.
Her email reminded me of the times that you stepped up and looked after me, protected me, when we were kids.
Like the time that Lois, me and a group of our friends were hanging around at the local gas station, bored on a Friday night. Some of the guys in our group were riding around in shopping carts "borrowed" from the local Mall, while we girls were just gabbing, giggling, flirting, and watching.
Just generally being silly.
Your friend was working at the gas station at the time. He knew I was your sister, and other than keeping a watchful brotherly eye out on all of us, didn't interfere with our idiotic pranks.
Until, that is, a group of very drunk guys, stopped their car beside the gas station, jumped out and tried to grab me and another friend of mine, Kelly, and drag us into the car.
They were so drunk that Kelly and I fought them off easily and all of us scattered. I ran into the gas station where your friend was, and he went out and sent them on their way.
He also told you what happened. You tracked those guys down, and told them they better not mess with your little sister or they'd be dealing with you.
From that point on, they not only never messed with me again, but were amazingly respectful when we ran into each other ;-).
Rick, whatever our differences, whatever harsh words passed between us over the years, especially recently, I know you were a good person, who cared deeply about people and about me.
I also know, that you know, I cared deeply about you.
You showed your concern by making the effort to build a relationship with my children despite everything and maintained close contact. They both love and respect you and tried very hard to make arrangements to come but unfortunately weren't able to.
You left me so suddenly, Rick, just like Dad did.
Your heart went, you're gone, and now my heart has broken into a thousand little pieces and the pain is unbearable.
Rick, I'm sorry we were never able to close that chasm that came between us as adults, and the whys and wherefores don't matter anymore.
It was what it was and that's all that can really be said about it.
However, talking to Rick Green helped me so much.
We laughed together about the silly little things and acknowledged the more important things, your kindness and compassion, your honesty and sincerity, the way you cared about everyone, the joy you brought to everyone ... all of the things that made you, you, and are permanently woven into the fabric of our memories.
You were loved Rick, by me, and everyone whose lives you touched on a personal level, and you will be missed.
Always your little sister,