Wednesday, July 15, 2015

What Would Laz Do?

What  Would Laz Do?

My wonderful readers: Please keep in mind that I’m writing this blog in remembrance of my wonderful friend Geremy “Lazarus de Legio - LAZ ” Havanec; who was taken from this life way too early and most unexpectedly.  I realize not everyone knew him (as hard as that is to believe); but we can all learn from him. 

This past week has been one of the most difficult I’ve ever been through; and I know I’m not alone.  We had to accept the fact that a beloved friend had died. We had to see him in a coffin; looking nothing like the full of life, joyful, amazing person he was.  I had to see my daughter and “son” so heartbroken they could barely breathe, let alone voice their pain.  We have witnessed countless tears, swollen eyes and hugs of support.  We sat through services, stood through eulogies, and said our final goodbyes. 

The amount of people who loved Geremy is countless, and he touched each and every one of our lives in a positive manner.  He was always there for us, to lend advice (even if it wasn’t what we wanted to hear), provide a hug, trouble shoot technical issues and open his home to a bunch of crazy haunters who wanted nothing more than to  just  be around each other (and himself, of course). 

So, now that all the services are over we find ourselves in a strange place: what now?  How do we move on without our friend?  The answers are wrapped up in these four letters:  WWLD?   What would Laz do?   He was never without a meaningful word or logical explanation for anything.  He would look at the situation, find the good in it and explain to us how we can use that to our benefit. 

Love Everyone

If anyone were to say “Laz didn’t like me”... I’d straight up tell them they were a liar.  Laz loved everyone… regardless of who they were, what they did, or any mistakes they may have made.  He hugged my mom the first time he met her, and asked about her constantly after the passing of my dad.  He treated everyone he met as a trusted and loved friend, and he meant it. 

WWLD:  Live by loving everyone.  Stop judging one another and simply love them.  We should be greeting everyone with a warm smile and helpful attitude.  None of us were afraid to ask Laz for help; so to honor him we should be more focused on trying to help others instead of kicking them while they are down. You know he wouldn’t want it any other way.  

Bury the Hatchet

And gracious…don’t leave the handle sticking out!  I’m pretty sure at one point or another we’ve all irritated Laz.  One of the most amazing things about him is that he never held that against any of us.  He still loved us, and he still helped us. No matter how many times we pissed him off .   Laz didn’t hold a grudge; he didn’t bring up past indiscretions or mistakes.  He moved forward and fostered a positive relationship with everyone in his life.

WWLD: Forgive and move on.  Why do we insist on hating each other?  Why do have to remember “she did this to me”  “he said this to me”?   Why don’t we just forgive and continue to be civil towards one another?   Now, don’t get me wrong here, I’m NOT advising you to say in a caustic or toxic friendship or relationship.  Just the opposite, actually.  I know for a fact that Laz has told many of us – myself included - (probably more than once) that a particular friendship or relationship wasn’t healthy and that stepping away is the best thing for everyone involved.  He’d also remind us that just because we can’t be as close to someone as we were doesn’t mean we have to be mean toward them, spread rumors, or be spiteful.  We forgive, we continue to love, and we move on.   

Get to the Doctor and get a yearly physical

The one conversation I had over and over this past week was “Laz wasn’t even sick.  He was a picture of health”.  Unfortunately, we know now, that wasn’t true.  Laz was having symptoms of his illness for a long while, but ignored them and didn’t go to the doctor to be checked out.   And we all found out too late.

WWLD:  GO GET A PHYSICAL!!  Get one every year. Do the preventative care (mammograms, colonoscopies, prostate exams, etc.) and maintenance needed to stay healthy and alive. I don’t care if it’s time consuming, or uncomfortable, or you don’t want to.  Do it anyway.  Life is already too short; please don’t make it shorter by avoiding the doctor and refusing to do what it takes to make sure you’re here. 

Explore every side

We’ve all heard the phrase “there’s more than one side to a story”. One of Laz’s true strengths was his willingness to explore every avenue of a situation; whether it was a political issue, an argument between friends, or even the reasons why the latest Sci Fi movie failed so spectacularly.   Laz didn’t jump to conclusions, listen to rumor, or engage in a debate without the knowledge he needed (to win, of course!).

WWLD:  Get all the facts.  Stop listening to, and perpetuating, rumors.  Stop talking about each other behind backs and start talking TO each other.  Resolve your issues, hug, and love.   When you engage in a situation with someone, approach it with logic, knowledge and compassion.   And above all else, remember this.  Violence is never the answer.   

There are never the right words to say goodbye to someone you love… so :

“BYE EVERYONE” … Rest well, Laz, we will always love you.