I've been thinking a lot about death lately.
Especially people in the news who have died from unfortunate accidents, horrific crimes or sad acts of suicide.
I feel that the majority of the time the person who died was "beloved", "adored", "nice and liked by everyone", "always happy" and "their smile would brighten anyones day". I've noticed that when people in my life have died, all of sudden they were everyone's best friend. They were the "nicest person in school" and "made everyone feel like they had a friend".
Now, please don't misinterpret what I'm trying to say. I'm not doubting that these claims are true. What I'm trying to say is... if that's how people really felt about the individual who passed, did they actually express it while the person was alive? If you were to talk to the deceased person, would they agree with everything that was said about them? Especially when it came to close friendships?
I remember when Michael Whittle died my senior year. It was horrible and heartbreaking that it had happened. But what bothered me was when I heard people claiming to be such good friends... even best friends... with him when I had never before seen them with Michael. I'd never seen them hang out with him in school, talk to him in the hallways, mention him in class. Nothing. And yet here they were, claiming to be his best friend.

I'm not trying to call out hypocrisy (even though the insincere who use the passing of another as means to gain attention is on the top of my list of how to be a horrible human being), all that I'm saying is that if you love someone, if you care for someone... make sure they know it. Don't let it be publicly declared when that person, who you love dearly, can no longer hear your words.

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