On Tuesday I had lunch with my friend Carol. It was the first time I’d seen her since her husband died of a heart attack a few months back and we spent much of the time talking about him. About their life together and the changes that take place when one loses someone.
We also talked about whether or not it was better to know beforehand if someone was going to pass… Ken’s death was sudden. My family has lost people after long, terminal illnesses and my mother is convinced that sudden loss is better. Easier.
I”m mixed, though I mentioned to Carol that time before an impending death gives families and loved ones a chance to let each other know how much they love them. How much they care. And if the death is sudden, well….
Carol’s response was, of course, that the unknown is why you ALWAYS let someone know you care. You don’t wait. You don’t miss an opportunity, because you never know.
Wednesday, the day after our lunch, Carol’s 24 year old son Garrett died in a single vehicle accident on Hwy 101. While I can’t even begin to comprehend Carol’s pain right now, I have no doubt that her son died knowing that his mother loved him. Knowing that people cared.
Don’t miss an opportunity, folks. Not everyone is given the clear deadline of a terminal illness… the time and opportunity to tell people they love them, to address regrets and repair relationship damage.
The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid
and deeds left undone.
-Harriet Beecher Stowe, Author