Tonight I’m thinking of my dear friend Andrew who was murdered by his ex-girlfriend in 2001.
I met Andrew on my first day transferring into a new kindergarten.
We never stopped being friends and kept in touch through high school, college, medical school (for him) and marriage (for me).
Another friend Jon once described Andrew as the kind of person who when he walked into a room, everyone breathed a sigh of relief.
He was charismatic.
Occasionally, I dream about Andrew and I ALWAYS realize I’m dreaming when he makes an appearance so I get down on my knees and start crying telling him how much I miss him.
He always stands me up, hugs me and then chats with me like old friends catching up.
Today, my mother spoke with his mother.
It’s something they do occasionally so that isn’t remarkable.
What is remarkable is that my mom is working on organizing THOUSANDS of old photos into albums and the next picture she plucked from the pile was a picture of Andrew with my dad and I.
Probably a picture from the last time I’d ever see him in person, although that detail only occurs to me now as I write this.
I took the picture, studied Andrew’s face, realized that the picture was taken in the very room where my mom told me he had been murdered.
The very room I was sitting in now.
Waves of nostalgia came over me and I found myself playing back images of him and I in my mind.
Him BLASTING “Top of the World” by Van Halen as he burned rubber out of his high school parking lot after graduation.
Listening to grunge music while playing pool at Andrew’s house.
My visit to see him in Irvine when we were in undergraduate school.
I attempted to relieve the sadness inside me by opening up my phone and scrolling through Reddit.
Lo and behold, the documentary about Andrew’s murder popped up in my reddit stream and I paused before watching the first 15 minutes of it.
I don’t usually watch that movie unless I have a bottle of wine, tissues, and at least a day to recover from my hangover.
The circularity of life is amazing.
I was supposed to think of him and remember our friendship.
And so a toast to my friend:
“There are good ships and wood ships,
Ships that sail the sea,
But the best ships are friendships,
May they always be!”