I woke up this morning in tears. My dreams were filled with my cousin Derek, who passed away on Saturday after a 2 year battle with colon cancer. He was only 35.
We knew the end was near, and we were able to have a teary goodbye via the phone a week and a half ago… but it’s still hard to believe he’s really gone. When I got the news I was in Chicago at the Healthy Living Summit. I knew the last thing he’d have wanted me to do was mope around and not have fun because of him, so I put it out of my mind. And then I packed. And then I moved. And then all of a sudden, via my dreams of hanging out with him and saying goodbye… it hit me. He’s really gone. And there’s no more hiding that I am really, really sad. I decided to take to my favorite form of therapy (besides running) — writing.
Do you guys remember my trip to California in December/January? Right after spending New Years in wine country with Jenna, I flew down to LA, where I played with my cousins Tory, Derek, and their beautiful sister Willow.
I had a feeling it would be the last time I saw Derek, and I was right. He was feeling pretty crappy by this point but hiding it rather well.
Can you believe we met for the first time only 2 years ago? During the summer of 2008, all 4 of my cousins (Derek, Willow, Tory, and Keith) came to visit me and my mom in DC, right before I left for Prague. I had met Tory and Keith before, but only chatted online with Derek and Willow. We quickly discovered that the 5 of us were long lost soul mates. We could not have had more of a blast tearing up DC.
While all of us were together in DC, Derek said he was having some pain in his groin area. He thought he had a hernia and we were all making fun of him for being an old man. We found out a few days after they left that it was Stage IV colon cancer.
We’ll really miss you, Derek. As promised, a trip is in the works so we can terrorize another city in your memory :)
I’ll post a real update later today — but for now know that so far all is well here in NC :) Unpacking is going well and I’m off to my first of two UNC orientations this afternoon!