I believe in embracing loss.
It was late at night and once again I had forgotten to do my homework. My assignment had been to ask my role model for a letter of recommendation and then bring that letter to class. When I first heard the assignment I knew exactly who I was going to ask to write my letter, Dave Hardy. The Hardy family had been our closest family friends since I can remember. We considered the Hardy’s as part of our family as they did us. Additionally, Dave was the founder and CEO of one of the first “go green” companies as well as a self made millionaire. I rushed my assignment over that night and asked Dave if there was anyway he could write the letter before the night had finished.
“Kyle, you are like a son to me, I would write a novel if you needed it.” Although the request was short fused, he was able to write an extraordinary letter for me.
At the time, Dave was in the early stages of battling cancer. Yet, if you were to see him or talk to him, you would have never known the fight that he was going through. He fought the battle against cancer for four years until cancer took the better of him this past summer. His funeral was a tough day for many people. Yet, Dave had touched many people’s lives and to see them all together under one roof was heartwarming, and in some ways joyful. It is at that moment that I realized a fundamental philosophy to life that most of us forget to realize. I believe that loss, as tough as it may be, is one of the most heartwarming and fulfilling things life has to offer.
People need to embrace loss and appreciate all that it teaches us. Without loss, we would never know what it is to enjoy someone else’s company or value their presence. Sitting at the funeral I remembered all of the fun times I had had with Dave and how much I had learned from him. Though I wished him back with all of my heart, I was happy to know that he was in a better place and that we had shared many great memories together during our lifetimes. The loss of Dave led me to value my friends even more and realize that life is always uncertain. I now try and create memorable relationships with people I meet, instead of just going through everyday life only worried about myself. Much like he was my role model, I too strive to be the role model and mentor of others. We must learn through loss and realize that it only dignifies the fun and enjoyable times we have shared with others. Loss lets us know that we have lived great and memorable lives with others we care about. Thanks Dave for still being my mentor. This I believe.