I recently attended a celebration of life at Stanley Park for a friend who sadly lost his life while fulfilling a dream. I have spent much time thinking about him and the times that we have enjoyed together. We learn so much from others but sometimes don’t make that realization until they are gone.
I fondly remember many soccer games watching our daughters and sharing in conversation. He would stand in his rain gear tirelessly throwing the ball for his dog Tegan and our dog Mel. His smile was like his own personal billboard announcing to those around him that life was worth living. The more one got to know him you realized that he took an active role in making that a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You see this friendship was a gift.
I have tears as I write this because I don’t think I ever told him how much he meant to me. Why don’t we ever extend a compliment or free hug to those who inspire us before it is too late?
He was a free spirit and I loved that about him. He rode his bike everywhere and lived life through his various adventures. During his celebration of life I saw pictures of him poised atop of mountains and heard stories shared by others who were as impacted as I was with this loss.
He raised his two children who have adopted that same infectious appetite for life. Sadly, he doesn’t know but his actions have influenced me as well. As I navigate new twists in this road of life, living as a boomer facing new challenges and decisions, I will remember his lust for life. He has taught me to make time for myself and to enjoy those simple pleasures that fulfill the heart and make us stronger.
Thank you for giving me your gift of friendship and for showing me through your actions that we must live out our dreams because we never know when this precious life will end. Because of you, my free spirit lives on and I can only hope that I can positively affect as many people as you have, leaving them wanting more.
Denise Kelly is a North Vancouver Boomer and North Shore CARP Chapter Chair proudly living with her two children, husband and dog Mel. She looks forward to sharing stories to motivate others. Follow Denise on Twitter at ZoomerTalk or she can be reached at [email protected]