“Life is short. Spend it with those who make your soul happy.”
I can remember a time, early in our friendship, when Danielle and Mike came over to my place so Mike could help me out with what was, undoubtedly for him, a very simple computer issue. He wandered around my house, delightedly pointing out all the out-of-date technology I owned. My video recorder. My Windows 98 computer. My walkman. “You live in a museum”, he said. And it made me laugh.
Mike was good at that. He always knew how to make people laugh.
And now, with the news of his sudden passing, I’m struggling with the why of it. How can this happen to one of the best people I know? He was fit, seemingly healthy and loving life. He and Danielle had just embarked on a life-changing adventure; working overseas, experiencing new places. But then one night he fell asleep and never woke up. I just can’t comprehend it. He was only 39.
Words cannot accurately reflect the grief we feel when we lose someone we love. But I’m devastated. And I’m devastated for Danielle; and for all those he left behind who have to go on, without his light, without his laughter.
Mike was a jokester. It was impossible to be serious when he was around. He’d shamelessly tease each and every one of us. Even when he wasn’t around, he’d post the most ridiculous, and oft-times wickedly inappropriate, things on Facebook – and I’d guffaw out loud. He’d always managed to make my day just a bit brighter, even when he wasn’t around.
Mike was the epitome of someone who lived life to the full.
He loved cycling and geek gadgets and Japanese food and science and travelling and anime and chilli and beer and sci-fi movies and sake and gaming and Taco Bell and One Piece and wine and K-pop and the list goes on. Oh, and he really loved the Game of Thrones – almost as much as I love Supernatural [which is a passion of mine that he always took pleasure in teasing me about]. But we loved the things we loved, unashamedly, and to me that was awesome!
I also loved that Mike always said exactly what he thought, in his quirky and fun-loving way. It would often elicit a collective response of, “Oh Mikie!” – but he was just a big kid at heart. He kept those around him feeling younger and happier and so much more optimistic. I will miss him a lot, but he’ll always remain in my heart; forever young, forever reminding me to not take life too seriously.