In my life but not

I spent a lot of the morning in bed thinking about Ed and the words my friend had written me in that card I received last night. I thought about how his life was cut short voluntarily, and how he had so much more to breathe in and experience. And then, later in the morning, I find out that someone else I have seen regularly, about once a month for the last year and a half, has also died.

Our building has arranged for an exterminator to do regular checks of each apartment monthly, and for the longest time, the same man would come knock on our door on a Saturday morning and inspect and spray our bathroom and kitchen. He was generally a friendly person and always smiled. Today, another exterminator came in to inspect the apartment, and having polite conversation with us, he asked if we remembered him. Of course we did, we said. We saw him every month. Well, he died, this man said.

Apparently, he died of a brain aneurysm. He supposedly seemed completely fine beforehand, but the aneurysm ruptured, and he died. It was such a shock to both of us when we found out. We saw him regularly for so long, and now suddenly, he is dead and we’re never going to see him again.

I spent a lot of today thinking about this on and off. We didn’t really know him as a person; he was just the exterminator who came to make sure our apartment was roach and rodent-free. He’s someone we saw regularly but had no real, deep relationship with. It still makes me sad. He’s someone who was in our lives, but at the same time, not. He couldn’t have been any older than 40 or 45. How does one even prevent a brain aneurysm? Or are we all just going to die of something ridiculous like this, or as I keep hearing, of some stupid, new form of cancer that seems to be a result of the chemicals and additives in the food we eat in today’s “modern” society?


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