My mother told me to sit down.
She was never a dramatic person, so I knew it was serious. In the seconds before she told me the news, what seemed like a million scenarios went through my head. Did something happen to my precious father? Were my beautiful sisters alright?
No, it wasn't anything like that. She wasn't upset enough for that, but she was scaring me.
I hesitated on the question, "What is it?" Part of me didn't want to know.
"Stay calm, Missy, but Brian is dead."
The silence was heavy between us. Finally, I asked, "Brian who?"
A look of bewilderment went across her face as she said the words I already knew somewhere inside me. "Brian. Your husband. He's dead, Missy. He had an asthma attack and he's dead."
Now I understood the drama: my mother didn't want anything to happen to the eight-month fetus I was carrying.
Tears started streaming down my face as I imagined the horrendous pain and panic he must have felt as he left this life. Then I realized the date: Brian took his last tortured breath exactly ten years from the day that he came into my life.
Nearly two decades later, as I remember the scene as though it were only moments ago, I realize that Brian, my high school sweetheart, was one of the most influential people in my life.
If there are blogs wherever you are, Brian, I hope you are reading this, and I hope you know that I thank you for helping me become the woman I am today.
God be with you til we meet again.