I at a recent reunion of my old teen and 20s gang, I was told by one friend I admire greatly; "Rob....we had some amazing times. Its good to see you like this again." The venue was a large nightclub and one of our friends' band was playing. They have a large following, and anyone who hears them, understands why.
It will likely be our friend's last performance, as cancer is cruelly taking his throat, and maybe him. We all had flash-views of what and who we were back in the 70s and 80s. We expressed no regrets what-so-ever. We admired our own efforts at life and doing all we could with what we were given, earned, gained, took and claimed. Today, we admire the strength some of our dearest show in the face of the unknown.
I'd have to say, we were a bit in awe of what we had as young folks, reaping every drop of life back then. We were also quite vocal about feeling denied the presence of those departed far too early.
What few moments may have seemed regretful in our youth, suddenly became golden when viewed through the eyes of adulthood and wisdom.
In the blink of an eye, we transformed from adolescents, to full-adults with a pure appreciation of what we had. We felt unique and fortunate. We had band practices of some to reflect upon. We had insane adventures at which to laugh.
Some of our gang have passed-on ahead of us. Some could not travel that far. We appreciated this as well. Why some were gone...why some could not attend, and that we genuinely missed their presence were still of value to a truly close circle of friends. Missing someone's presence indicates relationships not easily created, and never re-created. It has to be built upon good and relevant times.
If I could have changed anything about my time on earth with these amazing people, it would be to have trusted them with my story...my pain and my hopes in life. I'm truly sorry I never took that step.
I'll never have friends like that again (Steven King recognized), but I appreciate what I had more than many will ever understand. Its what tells me I had a role in the lives and times of our so-called "normals."