R.I.P., Death

Dear Death ~

You know what, I’m done with you. You’ve wreaked so much havoc in my life. I’m sick of it. I’m sick of you. Would you please go away for awhile?

Not that I wish bad on anyone, but, honestly, could you go bother someone else?

First it was my dad, eight years ago this month. This is always the time where I start to think about him a lot. How can I not? He clearly was suffering at the end before you took him. And that’s one reason why I don’t like you.

Then, as if that wasn’t enough, you went and took my brother this year. And, OK, he probably didn’t suffer — but the unexpected side you bring to the table doesn’t make things any easier. I know that now. And, have you no timing? I mean, you do realize that my daughter was born five days before my brother died?

You have no class, death. No class.

I especially know that now. Why? Because you took an amazing woman from this earth yesterday. She wasn’t immediate family, but that doesn’t make this any easier. Diane battled cancer for more than 15 years. She was one of the strongest people we know. Beat it. Comes back. Beat it again. Back. Goes away. But, no, you can’t stay away. Not enough other things on your plate.

And, you know what, death? It was kind of fine for me to deal with you. I mean, I’ve had experience with you. I know how you work. Butt this time, while your latest move affects me, it really affects Renee.

Diane was Renee’s mentor, a colleague when Renee first started teaching back in 1992. She took a new teacher under her wing and a bond was formed. I came home last night and Renee was sobbing. All because of you, death. All because of you.

Diane was also our landlord. And, get this, we paid $330 a month rent. She wasn’t about making a buck. She was about making this world a better place. That doesn’t satisfy you, though. You go and take her. And for what? Because she was suffering? She beat it before. She’d beat it again. IF you gave her the chance.

I knew Diane before I knew her son, a man who I have called a friend for more than 10 years — despite that he’s both a Yankees and Steelers fan. He has four kids, Diane’s four grandchildren. What are you going to tell them, death? Speechless, aren’t you?

You know what you do to us, death? You make us stronger. You bring us together. You keep memories alive, not people.

But, you know what you really are? Do you?

You, death, are a coward.


13 Comments on “R.I.P., Death”

  1. verybadcat says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Death sucks. Let’s kick his ass.

  2. milwaukeebuckeye says:

    Oh Mike, I’m so sorry for your loss. Your emotions toward death = my emotions toward, more specifically, cancer. It SUCKS.

  3. JenBun says:

    I’m sorry, Mike. I think this is one of the best posts you’ve written– honest, haunting, and very emotional and moving.

    Your family is in my thoughts…

  4. Clink says:

    Oh, I am so incredibly sorry for the loss that you and your family are experiencing. I just want to give you a great big hug and then another one.

    And I agree with JenBun, even if this may not be the right time to say it: this is one of the best things you have ever written. I got goosebumps and tears.

  5. Chelle says:

    FIRST, my sympathies. Death is a bastard. A teacher, but a bastard. SECOND, my appreciation. You are a wonderful man. And I’m glad we get to share some time together and learn more about one another. THIRD, ummm… I got nothin’… But you always say things are three-fold, so let’s see… THIRD, thanks for the dance!


  6. elizabethews says:

    Hey ~ I’m sorry for your loss and especially Renee’s. As Chelle said – things are three fold. Hopefully Death can leave you the heck alone now, huh?

  7. Barb says:

    So sorry to hear about this.

  8. Melissa says:

    I’m so sorry for your and Renee’s loss.

  9. Anna says:

    You got that right.
    So, so sorry. Sounds like a such a huge loss.
    This is some of your best stuff right here.

  10. Stephanie says:

    Let’s hope that 2008 (from here on out) is a year full of life and hope and wonderful things! Down with death. Lovely post.

  11. Oh Mike…I am so sorry for your loss! it sucks!

  12. L B says:

    you know how i feel about this…thanks for writing it, i send my love to you guys, i am so sorry.

  13. Christel says:

    My thoughts are with you and your family at this time…death is the inevitable coward.

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