Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Hug Tightly

It seems like my FF and I are ships passing in the night. Life is SO insane that we just don't see each other. Last night, I took the night off of duties - of any kind - and made the nearly two hour ride up with him to the wake of a childhood friend from his hometown. It was just time to talk - with no muppets interrupting. N was at a JV game that they asked him to play in (Perks of being a Varisty underclassmen), girls were at judo with grandpa and I think B was just enjoying the peace and quiet of his gaming world. 

This friend had been battling cancer for nearly seven years. His family seemed almost relieved. Watching him walk in (in uniform) to a room full of firefighters from his hometown/area was interesting. Watching Dan's father tear up at the mere sight of my FF - all grown up. Listening to the stories of his childhood, I got a laugh imitating one of the old admin from the high school (I student taught there), and realizing that this is a world I will never know.  I watched some of the VFDs look at my husband in big city department uniform - trying to figure out why he was there. (He's been gone since 1997.) There was a bit of bravado. But, I was proud that my FF was just there to say goodbye. He was in uniform to say, "See you later, my friend, my brother." Nothing more, nothing less. It was a moment of bonding and not bragging. The fire family knows no borders. He will be missed by all who love him. 39. Gone far too soon.

And then the ride home, hearing about the KCFD's loss. The saves. The heroes we must now honor and the family we must now support. Firefighter Larry Leggio & Firefighter John Mesh - you will be missed.

My lunch is almost over. I will need to brighten my teary eyes and add my pictures later. But, this morning, on our way out the door together, I hugged him tightly. And then again...and again. He probably shook his head at me once he got in the car. But, tomorrow, it is not a guarantee. And this life, there is some uncertainty to it. I wanted to make sure that he was certain that he was loved.

Hug those FFs and all your family tightly. Tomorrow is not promised.
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