Friday, March 27, 2009

Goodbye?

I cut Billy’s hair for years. After I went to work for the bank I still did his hair every 6 weeks or so. When I completely stopped doing hair, he and I kept in touch, just ‘cause I am so very fond of him. He is an inspiration to me. He is wise and grounded and loves to serve Christ.

Billy is a 70+ year old war veteran, did 2 tours in Vietnam, was a POW in Vietnam and came home to find that his wife, thinking he was killed in the line of duty, had buried him and had remarried and was expecting her first child. Billy eventually remarried, had 2 sons, twin boys. One of the sons died…Billy never told me how he died. These are just some of the things I could tell you about Billy’s life. Billy is one of the most amazing, caring, giving.....a-ma-zing men I have ever met.

The end of last year, Billy told me that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. He went through 6 weeks of radiation. We have kept up with each other via e-mail.

Today Billy called me. Said he wanted to check on me and see how I'm doing. I said fine and he said "you don't sound fine." I laughed and promised that I do not feel as terrible as i sound. He said that he is “going away for a little while” and wanted to call me before he left. I asked where he's going, He said "it's complicated". I asked when he's leaving. He said "maybe as soon as tomorrrow". He said “You are dear to me and an e-mail wouldn’t do. I want you to remember something….the difference in the steel used to make a paper clip and the steel used to make a sword is the temperature of the fire that it goes through.”

I think he was telling me good bye.