For Spencer

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Just hours ago, a friend in Michigan lost his life in a car accident.

In this past year I met and fell in love with the best guy I’ve ever known, and he introduced me to a whole world full of brand new people: a web based community called Icrontic. Being the  incredible community that they are, it wasn’t long before I called them all friends. They were warm and welcoming, and the sense of family that they’ve built is not just overwhelming, it’s beautiful. I’ve never known such a wonderful group of people. They cheer for one another when something great happens, and they rally behind one another when tragedy strikes. I saw that tonight.

Having just met Spencer a year ago, I didn’t know him as well as a lot of the other members of Icrontic, but I do feel a strange sense of emptiness that was not there yesterday. There is a place in my heart that I didn’t even realize was filled until I realized it had lost someone. I had grown to love Spencer just as I’d grown to love all the other Icrontians I’d met, but it had been so natural and so organic a transition, that I never really thought about it. I didn’t know how bad it would hurt if he was suddenly not here anymore. I never realized that I would miss him, because I never thought I’d ever have to miss him. I thought he’d always be around to help me out with Guild Wars, to run Dungeons with Dan and me, to make painfully corny jokes, to be… Spencer.

Suddenly missing something that you didn’t know you would, I think, is the very epitome of understanding that you’ve taken something for granted.

In a lot of ways, this is the saddest thing that’s ever happened in my life. Not in the sense that it happened to me, or even because he and I were close, because we weren’t… but it’s a tragedy. He was young. He had his whole life ahead of him. He wanted so many things that he’ll never get to have. He won’t get to meet the next great love of his life. He’ll never travel the world. He’ll never get married. Actually, you know? It’s more than that. Dammit. It’s the little things, too. He’ll never enjoy a beer again. He’ll never see snow again. I’ll wake up tomorrow, and he won’t. It’s so incredibly unfair, and I can’t seem to make sense of any of it. Not for him, and not for any of the many people that are grieving for him tonight.

God, Spencer. I’m so sorry.

The strangest thing, for me, is that I feel like I just talked to him. I can hear his voice so clearly in my head, that it seems impossible that he could be gone. I can still hear him laughing. How could he be gone?

And now, night has faded in to day. This happened last night. Next week, it will be last week. It’s true what they say that time just “marches” on… It supposedly heals all wounds, too, but I don’t know. What I do know, though, is that I understand my love for people a bit better today. I understand now, really for the first time, that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed to any of us. This is about that time when I’m supposed to get weirdly inspirational, I think, but I don’t have that in me. I just think that life is a harsh and fickle thing sometimes, and all we can do is hold on tight to the people around us, as hard as we can for as long as we can. I woke up next to the man I love this morning… and I’m never taking that for granted again. Ever.

As for my new Icrontic family, for those of you who ever find your way to this post, I love you guys. Never doubt it.

Goodbye, Spencer. I really am going to miss you.

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