As some of you know, my friend Rocky is dying from cancer. He runs a small blog at http://rocosis1.blogspot.com/ where he has spent the last year and a half documenting his fight and his journey towards terminal velocity i.e. death.
It strikes me as odd: I did not know Rocky before almost a year ago this month. I have never known him with cancer. I have never known the sound of his voice (He lost his voice a while ago) or seen him throw. I have never known him as anything other than as he is now.
But what a knowing that has been. He has been remarkably (remarkably!) open about his fight with cancer and his inevitable oncoming death. In a way it is an online journal about dying: not the dying we see in movies or the death that we so often come to know in our society - a sort of a quiet thing that happens to the side and we only know once it has happened. Instead it has been open and available: the level of pain, the difficulty getting a trach tube in, the physical issues as Baxter (he has named the tumor) continues to grow.
He was admitted to Hospice last night. I am sure that he did not go willingly but necessarily. He has beat the doctor's assessment by at least 6 months. He has hoped to make it another 4 to February, to see the birth of his second grandchild.
I only have two requests for you today:
1) Whatever is facing you, whatever you have to deal with, I can assure you that (for 99% of you) it is not nearly as bad as battling cancer and facing your own death. Look at today with a sense of proprtionality.
2) If you can (and if you are a praying person) spare a prayer for Rocky and his family.
Life is far more fleeting than we possibly imagine. Embrace today.