Thirteen years ago, I met a man online. On a sketchy “modeling” website. I took the train into manhattan (alone) to meet him, and promptly jumped into his car to go do a shoot. How reckless. That turned out to be one of the best days, and most fun shoots. We went to a wacky makeup artist who (I think) broke into some old lady’s house to do my makeup. And then we kinda shot “guerilla style” around manhattan hopping in and out of the car whenever we saw a location that looked kinda cool until nightfall stopped us. I realized then that he was just my kind of crazy.
I didn’t realize that he would become one of my dearest friends ever. One of my closest friends, an artistic mentor, one of my biggest encouragers/cheerleaders, and teachers. He taught me so much about life. About family. About letting stuff go. About the arts. About myself. He saw the real me, good bad and ugly, and didn’t judge me for it.
Hector was a genius. Truly. He was magical with music. So very accomplished and talented. And he made me appreciate it more. Even “church music” that I never really liked until he showed me how he did his thing at his church. He was also a great photographer and had some serious power in photoshop. I mean…I saw pictures of some of the women he worked with and then met them in person and….boy….I wouldn’t have known it was them!!
It was my plan this morning to go meet my mom at Beth Israel hospital so she could watch Roey for me and I could go up and visit my friend. Unfortunately he passed last night and I am riddled with guilt and regret. I know Hector knows how much I love and appreciate him. I know he knows that I know that he loves me. I know he wouldn’t want me to feel guilty for not getting to see him in time. But I still do.
If I could just jump into the delorian and go back to yesterday I’d sit beside him, hold his hand and tell him thank you. Thank you Hector. For being my friend, for being an angel on earth and blessing so many people with your presence, your energy, your music, your art, your wise words, your wack ass jokes and your huge huge heart. Thank you for calling me an artist. Thank you for your support. Thank you for your acceptance and understanding. Thank you for all the lessons, even the ones I refused. I’m a better person because of you. Thank you for being you. I’m grateful, so so grateful to have known you, love you and be loved by you. I will miss you forever. I love you.
Since I can’t go back in time, I’ll send that message out into the universe and hope he gets it.
I know he’ll get it.
My heart is with his family today. This is a really hard time. His wife, mother, siblings, children and grandchild all are suffering a deep loss that words can’t express.
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His friends, his congregation, and everyone who’d ever been lucky enough to spend time with him are feeling it today.
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I pray that the sting eases quickly, leaving behind just the sweet, smile-inducing memories of a great man taken much too soon.
Sorry to hear about this, Dani. They time heals all wounds. But there never seems to be enough time. I’m hoping that the right time will entire your heart and fill it with solace and love as you go through this tough time. And as I always say, Hang in there. You are stronger than you know.
Rania Osburn says
Dani, I’m so sorry to hear about this. It’s so hard to say good bye to people – whether family, friend, or friend that was damn-near family – that mean so much to you. I’m sorry he passed and that his family and friends have to suffer his loss but am thankful that you (and most definitely his family) will know that he loved you and that he knows you loved him.
I hope you do not feel guilt of not being able to say good bye (easier said than done, I know!). Honor your friend with love and laughter and memories of good times. That’s what will pull you through and what he would have wanted.
Love and hugs to you, Dani. And again, so sorry for your loss. I truly am.
Sorry to hear about your friend. While saying good-bye is hard to do, not being given the chance to do so can be even harder to deal with. However, I do think that when we send out messages into universe to our loved ones who have passed on, they receive them and understand. I hope that you and all his loved ones find comfort in knowing that he’s always with all of you in memory and spirit.
Hector sounds like he was an amazing man, and I’m so sorry you had to lose him. Your post serves as a permanent tribute to him. Beautifully written ::hugs::
Kathy C. says
Dani, so sorry to hear. Sounds like he made a true impact in your life.