Sunday, a dear man I knew unexpectedly passed away due to complications from surgery. The shock was more than I expected and for the rest of the evening and the next day I existed in a dull confused sadness. Many who know him will take his death hard. I can describe him and how calm and present he was, what a beautiful man he was, but that’s not to do him justice. The thread that runs through all of those who knew him is the feeling that we didn’t get enough time with him. I wish I could have gotten to know him better than I did. I wish I could have spent more time with him. But it’s too late now to know him closer in the physical sense.
His passing has reminded me how special and beautiful…. I don’t want to say lucky but that’s the word that fits my feeling best. I’m so lucky to live in a life where I am exposed to such amazingly beautiful kind people. Blessed? Without it being attached to the dogma of religion, I can say I feel blessed to have the ability to notice how lucky I am. I feel like for me to really honor his life, death and my own, I need to remain open and embrace those people around me I hold so dearly. Not to take their existence in my life lightly. No matter what capacity our friendship or acquaintance, to love them without reserve, even the woman who gives me my coffee, one cream one sugar at the drive through at the Cushing Mc Donald’s on my way to Stillwater. I may not hug her, (that might be frowned upon) but my kindness toward her celebrates my own life.
This man will be missed profoundly. His beautiful wife and children, I just can’t imagine the loss they feel. There are no words, sentiments that can reveal logic, or reason, or true comfort. No missing piece to the puzzle that can reveal the complete image of our story, and to make the attempt is to swim in an ocean with no shore. So to embrace the unknowing and love tenderly all of those my life is to become the ocean with no need for the shore.
Brad Calloway Baxter you will be missed. I’m grateful to have known you. You have left the deep richness of your memory in my heart.