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한국 사람이 아니다

[ website | The Daily Abyssinian ]
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... [Sep. 29th, 2007|02:40 pm]
한국 사람이 아니다
[Tags|, ]
[Current Location |Southie]
[Current Mood |sadsad]
[Current Music |the UConn game]

OMG

I have no words. A dear friend of mine from many years ago...long before we knew about internets and MP3s...has died.

I've never really liked those euphemisms: "passed away," "crossed over," "gone to a better place." Dying is dying. It's final. Never really saw a need to sugar-coat it, not even when Harri died. Dead is dead. Despite what you believe happens afterwards, for those of us who are still living won't ever know, will we?

I met maestrateresa at least 20 years ago. She and Harri are irrevocably entwined in my memory. He loved her. He could see colours, at least shades of blue, and he made a point of choosing her lap at Flieg's fire whenever she wore blue. When Harri died, she quickly responded, "Oh, Koshka, I'm so sorry! I am very glad that you were able to be there for him, holding him, and reminding him of how very loved he was. He was a truly magnificent creature, and you gave him a wonderful life. {{{hugs}}}"

So in two entries from two friends, one whom I've known longer than 20 years, and one I'm not sure I've ever met, I learn that this wonderful woman will never post again. I don't know the details, all my knowledge comes from some friends' posts and her memorial webpage. Her last post, made only last Wednesday(!) said, "Reply to this post, and I will list three things I love about you. Maybe more than three. Then repost to your own journal and spread the love." Tangled in the web of my life, I hadn't had a chance to respond...until today, too late.

I always say, "You only really regret what you don't do," and it is so true in Teresa's case. She spent several weeks in NYC this summer, and while I wanted very much to see her when she was on the east coast...somehow I never managed to, for one reason or another, and she returned to the West. Stupid how little things manage to assume importance, scary how there always seems to be time to do things later.

I've spent a lot of time in medical facilities in my life, having asthma. In the past 7 years since moving to Boston, I've turned my affliction to an advantage, participating in several studies for asthma research. I've probably spent more time at BWH than most places in Boston; apart from home and work, it's probably the place I'm most familiar with. I went there yesterday, thinking as I made my way through the underground passageway called the "Lower Pike" to the cashier's office how well I know these hallways.

The cashier's office is located next to the chapel. As I passed it, an older woman was on the phone, speaking to someone, and crying. And with a kind of jolt I was reminded of something I tend to forget when I'm in the hospital: This is a place of endings. You think of babies being born, routine check-ups, annoying lab tests...but people die here, too. Loved ones are lost. Goodbyes are said...or, tragically, not said.

And now I have a goodbye said too late of my own.

Goodbye Teresa.

My heart is with the Thousand, for my friend stopped running today.
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