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My Dearest Friend

My best friend Frank came into my life through one of my girlfriends. We became fast friends and saw each other through thick and thin. If anyone ever wonders if a guy and a girl can have a loving but platonic relationship then I can tell you that it is possible. When my mom was alive she loved Frank so much. He cared for her and when he came to visit me at her apartment she was always glad to join us for some drinks. He and I used to enjoy roaming the streets of New York City and just enjoying life.

Unfortunately Frank left his world in 2010 at the age of 60. We had kept in touch over the years even when I moved to Riga, Latvia. At the end of the 1990s, my hubby and I were able to travel to the states and I introduced him. He and my hubby hit it off famously. When his marriage didn’t work out he decided to live with his aging mom so that she wouldn’t be alone. He was hoping to find another love who would be willing to also accept his mom.

His dad died of prostate cancer and for many years was confined to a wheelchair. However all through his troubled times, his wife loved him through it all and he and Frank even took trips to Las Vegas, a city they both really enjoyed. Frank saw all of this but was still disturbed that his father had to live such a life. What he didn’t see was a man, who even when the chips are down didn’t give up and continued to enjoy life and get the most out of it.

Frank enjoyed his job working at the main post office in Midtown Manhattan, NYC. He had a girl he enjoyed spending time with. His mom was glad he was living with her. He enjoyed relaxing and drinking martinis. He would call me up on his days off just to catch up on what was happening in both our lives. Toward the end, he mentioned a couple of things that health-wise worried him but told me not to worry because his cousin was a doctor and his cousin was taking care of things. The last time I spoke to him he said that he was looking forward to us getting together in our old age and having a great time laughing about all the things we did when we were young. I never heard from him again until I called up and his mom told me he was gone. As she explained it he began to drink uncontrollably and one morning he couldn’t stand up. She called the paramedics and two days later he was gone.

Being an ocean away I had my own thoughts. Knowing what he had told me about some of his so-called minor health problems they became really big health problems. I am convinced that he too discovered that he had prostate cancer but didn’t want to share it with anyone. He certainly didn’t want to have his mom taking care of him when confined to a wheelchair with plastic bags and whatnot. He also knew that if he had shared this one last crisis with me I would have been by his side no matter what and I and his mom would have made sure he had the operation and that wheelchair and all he would live for a number of years just as his dad had lived. Frank chose not to worry any of us. So a couple of martinis became dozens of martinis and the pain he was feeling and the fear lessened day by day until finally his body gave out and the angels took him away. It doesn’t hurt any less and it does make me want to shout, “You could have lived”.

It was strange just thinking he was no longer in this world. I had two significant dreams in which he called me as usual and I heard the phone ringing. When I picked up I heard his voice but before he could say much the phone got disconnected. I know he wanted to tell me what had really happened but after the second attempt, I got no more nighttime calls. I would like to think that in some cases like with Frank the Lord is forgiving even if he took his own life. So would I would be content to know that he and my Martin have met up above and are both watching over me.  The photo is the last photo taken of Frank and me at the airport when Martin and I were returning to Riga, Latvia.

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