In memory of Kevin - my lost love

United States
April 30, 2007 1:38pm CST
Honestly that's probably not the best subject line but I'm hurting right now. Many years ago I met this guy, Kevin, who joined our gaming group. At first I thought "what a jerk!" because Kevin was extremely intelligent and could weild that mind and mouth to devestating effect! He was tall, overweight, wore glasses, and never seemed to be without this funny little hat. He was a good gamer, though, who always came up with the most imaginative, interesting, thoroughly fleshed out characters. In time as we learned about each other I learned that Kevin was like his characters in some ways, very complex. I found out that his sharp tongue and wit was nothing more than armor he hid behind because he was such a sweet, kind, giving person that had been hurt in his life. Once you made it past his defenses and into his heart, though, you were there for life. He was such a wonderful person but he was convinced that the world saw only a fat, grotesque monster and that he would never find love and family like he secretly yearned for. I loved him so dearly and actually ached inside sometimes because I couldn't be that love for him. He was simply looking for things in a woman that I am not and never could be and the reverse was true. Though we would never be anything but friends I took him into my heart and tried to lavish all the love and affection on him I could hoping it would ease his inner torment at least a little. There was nothing I wouldn't do for Kevin and I know that there was nothing he wouldn't do for me. I often prayed that somehow all the love, hugs, and time I spent with him would prove to him that he was a wonderful person worthy of the woman he was searching for. Kevin was enamored of China, it's people and culture. He was a Buddhist and learned Chinese so that he could go to China to teach English for a year. I still have every letter he sent to me. It was difficult in some ways, he had to walk everywhere he went, boil his water in order to drink it, and adapt to a whole new way of living but he was happy there too. I was both delighted and heartsick when he found a girlfriend there because he finally had someone he loved in that way but he would have to leave her behind when his time was up. He was a voracious reader and writer with a true passion for the written word. I thought I read a lot but Kevin's aptitude for tearing through books and retaining what he'd read put me to shame! It was an escape for him into worlds where he could explore anything and be anyone, away from this shallow, cruel world who just saw him as a fat jerk. Kevin was there for me just as much as any husband could be, in sickness and health, good times and bad. When I had my first son he was right there by my side holding my hand after my c-section, distracting me from all the physical discomfort, and patting my back while holding the pan through my nausea so that my husband could get some sleep. And despite his blusterings that children were annoying he delighted in holding, playing with, and cooing over his new "little nephew". He was such a big man with such a gentle, sweet touch. When my husband went away to boot camp it was Kevin who moved right in to help support me. He made me laugh when I felt down, helped change diapers when I was exhausted, and made me feel safe and loved. I don't know how I would've made it through those months without him. Kevin was never afraid to take an unpopular stance. Some of my fondest memories of him are just the two of us debating over a wide variety of opinions. He really helped me cement some of my beliefs, challenge the validity of others, and accept other people despite our differences. He helped me grow into a better person. A few years ago we got a call that Kevin had tried to kill himself. It was a very hard time in my life just then. My husband was becoming more and more abusive, I was trying to support him despite it through a crippling injury he'd received overseas in the army, I had two sons and was pregnant with a third. But Kevin needed me so I was there. It turns out that Kevin had developed an illness of some kind where his body was attacking itself and eating away the flesh on his legs. He had hidden it from me so well I never suspected the amount of pain he was in. He said he'd tried to end his life because the pain was just too much for him, he could just barely even walk, and he hadn't told me because he didn't want to be a burden. Ooohh how I cried over that! In the midst of his own pain he was still putting others first, worrying about me! I firmly told him that this was the end of such nonsense and moved him into my home with us right away. His poor legs looked like so much raw hamburger and I could see that the pain was excruciating! Yes, maybe it was another burden in a way but it was a happy burden. I overrode his protests about his weight on my tiny frame and helped him around the house, made him comfortable on the couch where he could participate in the family, jumped to bring him anything he needed, changed and washed his bandages crusted with filth from his poor legs, held him and patted him through tears, and kept up an endless supply of movies and books to keep him entertained. It seemed to really be working! His mood was improving and he was speaking hopefully about the future. He said when he felt better he would move closer to us so that he wouldn't feel so alone again and I was so happy! I told him that he must stay with us until he was well and financially on his feet enough for his own place because having him with me was a joy in a dark time of my life. Another friend and I often drove him to doctor's appointments and one of those he had to go in for surgery to repair a bleeding ulcer. I didn't think a thing of it. After all, it should be fairly routine, simple surgery, he was only 37 yrs old, and I was looking forward to having him back home with me when it was done. I was happy to know that the pain in his stomach would improve along with the wonderful healing his legs were doing. I only wanted him to be whole, healthy, and finally truly happy as he deserved. Then they told me that Kevin died during surgery. I thought it was some sick joke at first. How could Kevin be gone? We were just talking about a wonderful, bright future. He was too young to simply be gone! All he really wanted was to be happy, find a woman to love and have his own family. How could someone as wonderful as Kevin never have something so basic and simple? My whole world just fell apart. His abusive parents cleaned out his apartment taking the things that they thought held value, his electronics and computer with all of his writings on it. Afterwards we went and took the things that we knew Kevin truly cherished, his beloved books and collection of Buddha statues. Every one of them holds a very special value to me and I will cherish them for him all my life. But I know to truly honor Kevin he would want these things used so I continue to search for people and places that will use them and value them the way Kevin did and would want. I may have found someone here on myLot who I believe will give a good home to some of his books. It is a person from China who would like to improve their English. I know that Kevin would be very happy if some of his books went to this person to be used as Kevin would've wanted them to be. I can't think of any better honor I could give than to have Kevin's generosity, love for China and the written word. It's been about three years since Kevin died and I'm still not over the loss. I still cry and rage sometimes that I miss him so horribly and it's too cruel that he was taken like this. He had so much left to give this world and he would've given it joyfully. He was more than just my best friend. Kevin was family, my brother no matter that we came from different parents. Please take what lessons you can find from this to help me make his loss mean something. Learn to look beyond the physical appearence of others. Accept love and joy wherever you find it and give it back joyfully and unselfishly. Tell the people you love how special they are to you because they could be gone in an instant. I love and miss you, bro. I pray that I make you proud and that we'll meet again one day.
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