I remember him from when I was in the third grade. We were only classmates back then, but that changed in seventh grade when we became the best of friends. I was allowed to go home for lunch as my house was really close to the school and he would come along with me almost every day.
Our class was on the fifth floor of the school building and I would hang off his arm while he dragged my lazy butt up the stairs almost every day. We used to ride our bicycles in the evenings even though we loved a few miles away from each other. We did all that best budds do at that age including watching our first porn movie. Then one day in ninth grade he told me he was leaving the country for good. He was immigrating to the USA.
My world fell apart. I knew I would miss him terribly. He moved away the following year and in a few months I got a letter back from him. Yes, snail mail. It was the early 1990’s and the Internet wasn’t as all pervading as it is today.
We kept in touch. I had his phone number now and I would call him on his birthday without fail as he would call me on mine. I started traveling for business at an early age, while I was still at university. I would visit New York for work and make the cross country trip to Los Angeles to see him.
I was there at his graduation, I was by his side when he moved to New York to walk along a career path which he had dreamed about since he was in grade school. He is a fashion designer. I remember as far back as third grade, he would draw women’s dresses, he made it by becoming a fashion designer in New York.
I have always admired him for his determination and the sheer talent he possesses. I have learnt a lot from him. I remember he once asked me, “How many times do you tell the people you are close to that you love them?” I seldom did. “You can’t say that enough to the people you love, who knows they may not be around one day.” He has told me a million times that he loves me.
Today he lies in hospital, fighting for his life. It breaks my heart as he is looking to turn forty next month. Usually one can attribute medical problems to lifestyle choices, but not in this instance. He suffered a stroke like incident while he was working out the gym. That is why this makes no sense. He is a healthy guy living a balanced life in body and mind; well as balanced as the world allows.
Know that I love you my friend. Know that you bring light into my life. You make it easy for me to keep facing all that life throws my way, because I know you are there to talk me through the tough times and laugh and smile with me when the times are good.
It isn’t time to go just yet. There is so much you have left unfinished. So I pray that you stay. I hope you make it through this time of difficulty. I love you very much, always and forever. Please say a little prayer for him.