Sunday, May 2, 2010

May 2, 2010

Today I am Grateful for:

Life. Where do I start here? I guess I will start with Happy Birthday Gina. Gina became a very close friend when I was 16. We went everywhere together. We drove around in her little blue 71 bug and drank and did drugs in New York state like most of the teenagers of my time did that I associated with. We got stuck in snow drifts, we always had a bottle of Southern Comfort in the glove box, Bruce Springsteen was blaring and smoke bellowed out of the windows like Cheech and Chong. That was the start of a budding close relationship that lased over 3 decades.

After I moved to Texas I still continued my ways, but Gina seemed to get tangled deeper into drugs and other issues that made her life unmanageable. I was always quick to judge her life on what she was doing wrong, forgetting to look at where I was standing.

On the last visit that Gina had to my house we went to Galveston. Of course at the time we smoked weed and went to a little outdoor place and drank. She always drank more than I ever could in one sitting. My preference was drugs to alcohol, but one always led to the other. As we sat there, I learned about things in her past that today truly make me understand that alcohol is merely a symptom of other issues. Things she told me explained so much of her to me that day. It showed me how she was covering up her pain and trying to stop the feelings that I knew she could still feel.

On February 17, 2008 Gina got up on a Sunday morning early, got her glass of wine, her weed and the numerous prescription drugs she was taking for emotional and physical issues (about 19) and sat down at her computer. In the middle of sending a joke email she put her head down and died.

As I sit here writing this I realize that was the start of me understanding that I had a problem as well. I looked at that whole situation and even though we were different, we were very much the same. He issues may have been a little louder than mine, but I could see myself. By September of that year my life was imploding and I had to do something about it before I put my head down like Gina did. I knew I had more to do on this planet and I had a family I couldn't do that to. I am fortunate that I could look past what was different about us but see the similarities.

Here is to Gina. She loved Bruce Springsteen and had probably seen him a few hundred times in her life. He favorite line from one of his songs that she loved that she said was about her was:

"She ain't a beauty but she's alright." It was very fitting for her.

I was very fortunate to know such a funny, bright caring girl. She came along in my life when I was needing a good friend and she stayed with me her whole life. She is part of my past that I will not forget, nor will I close the door on. I am glad that her pain and suffering is over and she is set free to continue with the circle of life. Till we meet again.


  1. Some of us are not able to write the last chapters of our book. You and I get to do that, to write them as creatively as we wish.

    Here's to Gina.

  2. Your post was truly an honor to her life, her impact, and her legacy. I think she is smiling now!


  3. I'm glad that you didn't put your dead down and die. I'm sorry that Gina didn't make it over the long haul to find freedom in this life from her pain. I wish that she had. Take care and thanks for sharing about your friend.