Thursday, September 1, 2011

Death to An Angel

Mostly everyone knows what it's like to lose someone, whether that decision may be good or terrible for you. Some people lose others through break ups, fall outs, or just plain old losing touch. Then there
is a completely different field of loss. Losing someone that who you will never see again in your lifetime because they cease to exist. 

death/deTH/Noun The action or fact of dying or being killed; the end of the life of a person or organism.


I have to be completely honest.  I don't deal well with death. In fact, I have a great deal of anxiety against it. This phobia so to speak didn't develop until I was in my early twenties when I lost someone close to me. It made me think vastly differently about my life in a pretty small span of time. What I didn't take seriously before, I surely take seriously now. I take the time to put on my seat belt now, or to I make sure not to get in the car with a person who is under the influence. Or not drink too much in general. I've given up the thought that something bad could never happen to me or one of my loved ones, because it actually happened to me.

I've lost quite a few relatives in my life so far, including all of my grandpas and one grandma. One of my grandpas died before I was born, so I didn't even get the chance to meet him. My other grandpa I have very vivid memories of, and as for the grandma, sadly, it gets even more vivid than that. However, I never knew what it was like to lose someone that I cared for so deeply and depended on so much up until I was the age of twenty-two when I lost one of my best friends: Andrew Mark Sherman.

May 18th 1985-September 1st 2008

Andrew was my knight in shining armor, minus the shining armor. He protected me from all of the bad, even though I often ignored his protection because I was young, naive and had to figure out that type of stuff on my own. He was the guy I called when I wanted to do something. I never hesitated and neither did he. He was over in a heartbeat before we even got off our phones. We'd venture off in his car and drive to the local guitar shops, or go out to eat where I would watch him down 20 wings. He was the one I can just sit around with and talk to for hours about all of the things I was interested in, because he was too. We were so alike it was scary. And finally, he was the guy that I could bring home to my hard to please dad. Andrew was no stranger to my parents. My mom loved feeding him when he came over. My nephew Skylar, who is ten years old right now still vividly remembers him. Andrew made an impact on everyone that came across his path.

I met Andrew the summer my cousin went away to Iraq. He threw a going away party and I met him along with a bunch of others. However, we didn't really become close until autumn when everyone went away to school and what not. It would always be me, him, and our friend Lenn. We called ourselves "The Three Amigos". We were pretty inseparable that fall and winter. We even celebrated New Years Eve together.

From right to left: my brother Bruce, Len, Andrew and I.

With every best friend of the opposite sex came curiosity. Andrew and I never dated, however we thought about it from time to time but our timing was almost always off. His dad thought that we were a couple because for a good chunk of time we were inseparable. But we were the type of friends that could hang out in his room for hours, with the door shut- but be up to absolutely nothing but laughing our butts off. Or playing wrestling video games.

The summer of his death is when I grew the closest to Andrew. We had way too much in common to just give up on a friendship because we weren't going to work romantically.He was teaching me a few strings on the guitar, and I returned the favor by teaching him how to Professional Wrestle at a Wrestling School where I was the head trainer. I remember how dedicated he was to learn from me, how carefully he listened to what I had to say. Here was this gigantic 6'4 man listening to a little shrimp like me. After an exhausting and traumatic 8 year wrestling career, I was nearly ready to call it quits. But that summer, because of him and with the help of a few others- I changed my mind.

Andrew was the type of friend that would want to meet my boyfriend to make sure that he was a good egg. Granted, there has been some guys he wasn't too keen on me dating. But he always went to extra mile to meet the most important people in my life. I remember the call he had to make to my parents when I got seriously injured in the ring. I had thrown my back out pretty bad and he and another friend rushed me to the hospital. He handled it so well, and made me feel as if everything was going to be okay. He was a natural nurturer.  I'll never forget a conversation that I had with Andrew about three weeks before his passing. We were in his car and he told me that he loved me like a sister and that I was the best female friend that he's ever had. It was something that I was so sick of hearing from my guy friends at the time.  I look back now, and it is one of the sweetest things that he could of ever said to me.

The Three Amigos
It's been three years since Andrew has been gone. I thought that this type of thing would get easier as time rolled on and wounds healed. But the lesson learned here is: it will never get easier on it's own. You must choose the path that you want to take because no one will do it for you. In the end, you are the one to pick up the pieces that you shattered all over the ground. I was seriously mistaken when I turned to some of the people that I did during this time. Be very choosy with who you turn to.

Five Stages Of Grief 
1. Denial and Isolation.
 2. Anger.
 3. Bargaining. 
 4. Depression.
 5. Acceptance.

Accepting Andrew's Death is something that took a very long time, but I have come to terms with the fact that I will never get a text message from him again, or a phone call asking me to come over and play guitar with him. I won't be able to hear his wacky impersonations anymore, or be able to teach him a wrestling move. It took months before I had the courage to delete him out of my phone. In fact, I had to make a friend do it for me. I felt so much guilt that  I gave up wrestling for good the year Andrew died. I couldn't teach a class without hiding in the bathroom and crying my lungs out. I was afraid to smile due to the intense guilt that I would feel. I quickly learned that this was no way to live. Andrew went above and beyond to make his friends happy. I knew that he wouldn't feel so pleasant if he knew I was sitting on my couch 24/7 and wasting a perfectly good life. He'd probably yell at me and tell me to go to the gym.

In the light of any situation like this, it is that each day gets a little better.

Three years and it seems like just yesterday we were taking
pictures at red lights with our clown noses on.

There's no one in town I know
You gave us some place to go.
I never said thank you for that.
I thought I might get one more chance.
What would you think of me now,
so lucky, so strong, so proud?
I never said thank you for that,
now I'll never have a chance.
May angels lead you in.
Hear you me my friends.
On sleepless roads the sleepless go.
May angels lead you in.

-Hear You Me by Jimmy Eat World


  1. This is beautiful. I'm sorry for your loss.

  2. Oh, while I was reading that I kept thinking that losing a loved one must one of the hardest things in life.. I haven't lost many ppl in my life yet; though I know it'll eventually happen and that scares me out of my mind.

    Many blessings,


  3. First I am so sorry for your loss. Second Andrew couldn't be prouder of you right now seeing what you have written.

    It IS hard losing someone so close to you. I lost a son 8 years ago. It is always harder it never gets easier that you lost him but it gets easier to cope with,if that makes sense.

  4. Hey, Kristin. I've just added your blog button to my latest post. Hope it's ok with you! :P Pls let me know..

    Have a great week!

  5. Yes, yes yes!! Of course I'd love to be on your Blog of the week here!
    I'd be honored - yaaaay!

  6. This post is moving and I believe the stages of grief and your honesty about moving through them help others connect to the sadness you've felt. Thanks for sharing, as I believe in a way, this can help others who are trying to smile even though they feel guilty.

  7. hi! new follower!

  8. I am so, so sorry for your loss. I can tell just from your description that he was a wonderful person.

  9. beautiful post.. Im so sorry for your loss :(

  10. This was incredibly touching, heartbreaking and beautiful.

  11. Thank you guys!!! Andrew was a wonderful person and I'm glad I could show that through my writing. It really doesn't do him justice though! He was one of a kind. Thanks for reading it, it means so much! :-)

  12. This is so touching. I know I don't know you personally but this made me sad for you. I haven't lost anyone close to me but I can imagine how hard it's been.


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