Imperfectly Nice

Regrets

Carrie: Are we EVER going to see each other again?

Me: No. No we, apparently, are not. 😦

This was a conversation I had on Facebook with Carrie last summer. I was wrong when I said this. We did see each other again. On her death bed. And again at the funeral home. I dropped everything including work and my family to go to her side. Of course I did. There was no question that I wouldn’t. So why then? Why not before? Why not all of the other times we tried to get together and some stupid, little thing kept it from happening? Why wasn’t it as urgent then? It should have been.

I always loved the fact that Carrie and I had one of those rare friendships that allowed us pick up right where we left off. We could go days or weeks or months without speaking and still go on as if no time had passed. I used to think that was one of the beautiful things about our friendship. Now, I realize that was just a horrible reason not to try harder. Because she would always be there, and our friendship would always be there. We would always love each other and there would be a million more chances to see her, to hear her sing. I hate it when I am wrong. Really, really hate it.

I have memories. And I will hold them dear. I wish there were more. I wish there were memories of our kids playing. I wish so much that I had a memory of Vaught sitting in her lap while she sang to him. But there isn’t. There’s just the wish. And Vaught sitting in my lap while I sing. Y’all, I can’t sing. He will know her through her music. I will make sure of that. But it won’t be the same.

If there is someone in your life that precious, someone who you have a friendship with that can pass the tests of time and distance and life, don’t let the time and distance be excuses. I remember not going to see Carrie sing in Laurel because she was singing on Thursday night and I had work on Friday. I don’t even think I had a meeting or a deadline, just work. I had the vacation time. I didn’t use it. It was a work day and you go to work on work days. I gave up an opportunity for a night I would never forget for one insignificant day of work that I will never remember. Sometimes, rules are meant to be broken. I promise you, Carrie, that I will try to stop seeing the rules and the little hiccups along life’s path as things that will deter me from doing what is truly important. I know we tend to have a huge wake-up call that changes us and then we slowly but surely slide back into our comfortable molds. When I feel myself start to slide, I will listen to your music. Your voice will remind me that today, there are friendships to nurture and people to love and life to live. There are memories to be made.

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