It has taken me a few weeks to even begin writing this blog entry. I lost another friend this year and I haven't quite accepted the reality yet. Somehow, it seems, not writing the words or posting the memorial makes it less real in some way. However, Scott deserves a farewell and thus I will do my best.
I attend Weight Watchers weekly, sometimes I am very successful and my meetings are celebratory, other times I fail the program and I go so that the scale and my friends will remind me that going UP is not the goal. Last January a "new guy" plopped down at our table. We are a large meeting and many of us sit in smaller 'groups' and our group has been together for what seems a long time. We have people come sit with us and as we did with Scott we welcome them, chat with them and try to behave ourselves through the meeting without talking amongst ourselves. Many times, new members will migrate to a less 'set' group, a group of other newbies, a group that doesn't have such a hard time behaving, but Scott was instant part of our group. He made it even harder for me not to crack jokes, because he laughed easily and seemed to just fit in with us.
Somewhere along the way he became "one of us" and for me when I knew I could call him FRIEND (a word I value highly) was when I posted on Facebook about a previous loss and he instantly sent me a message that I could call him if I needed to talk. I did call and I told him I couldn't stop crying and he assured me it was okay and he listened as I blubbered and talked nonsense, somehow absorbing my pain despite our being relative strangers. He was an empathetic sort with a great heart.
We would chat at meetings about family and life and we shared different but similiar stories about children and their doctors appointments, faith and more. During his time at Weight Watchers he lost about 50lbs (if I remember correctly) and began joining us for our monthly dinner celebrations when he could. The few times I had to bring Duncan to meetings he was super-kind to Duncan allowing him to hang on for big hugs that Duncan likes. When he would talk about his daughters he was very proud and was always telling me how his oldest was and animal lover like myself. In August he had to leave Weight Watchers for a time and we made a point to invite him to our September dinner (it was my birthday and I wanted all my buddies there).
I have regrets now, hindsight is like that, that I didn't make more time. I didn't 'bother' him for the October dinner, because there was always the November one, right? I didn't think to invite his family for dinner because I could do it after I finished painting the hutch, right? I never dreamed I would meet his daughters and wife at his memorial. No matter how many times I am reminded that life is short and we should take the time WHILE we have the time...I can find failings. However, I am glad he chose to sit with us. I am glad he was so easily amused as to have found my jokes worthy of laughter. I am even glad the last message I sent to him on facebook was "come and visit you snob" or something similiar, because I meant it, I just wish he had.
I think there is never enough time to not wish for "one more". One more laugh, one more meal, one more 'attaboy'...however, I hope this December and beyond we will all enjoy the ones we have with the ones that are left....
Farewell, Scott Reed, you are missed!