Friday, March 23, 2012

Four Years Since We Saw Him

Today it has been four years since we last saw Leif alive. Four years ago, March 23rd was Easter, and Leif came driving down from Tampa to have dinner with us. He was relaxed and happy, in love, seemed to be taking things in stride. We had a good visit, a good discussion. I can picture him just as he was that evening, first sitting across from me at the kitchen table and later in the green recliner in the living room with his hands behind his head.

I'm glad our memories of that last precious visit are good ones, that it was a pleasant evening together, glad I gave him the $20 for gasoline, since he'd said he didn't have the money to fill up his tank to come for dinner! I wish I'd give him $100.

There was no hint that he was desperate or suicidal. In fact, it seemed just the opposite. I remember that both Peter W. and I felt he seemed better than he had at Christmas or his birthday. Either we misread him completely or something changed dramatically in the following two weeks.

It still seems unreal to me that he won't ever show up for dinner again, that he won't ever bring his laundry with him, that he won't ever send me a text message. Unreal, but I know it's true. It doesn't seem like four years could possibly have passed since the last time I saw him.

This photo of Peter W. and Leif was taken in Puerto Rico at Hacienda Buena Vista in June 1991 when Leif was 16 years old, with his trademark Oakleys hanging around his neck, of course.

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