Smiles interrupted..

About 3 years ago now, My husband and another friend had kind of dragged me nearly kicking and screaming into playing this online game. It was silly and fun, and for my general no nonsense nature, what I deemed originally to be a waste of time. I couldn’t possibly imagine anything worthwhile coming out of it, because it was just a game. Commonly rolling my eyes at the prospect in the beginning, because I was far to sensible to play their goofy little games, but conceding because Deon really wanted me to play with them, so I did.

The funny thing is as adamant as I was in the beginning, I actually started to enjoy it because of the social nature, and because of the people I met through it.  Even though we haven’t played now for quite awhile, I still have contact with a few really wonderful people I had met there.  I have a friend in England, one in Scotland, and a handful speckled all around the US that I either e-mail, or interact on facebook with, or call.

One such friend was a gentleman out of Washington by the name of Chad Van Skoyk. He was always incredibly nice. Deon and him hit it off pretty quickly as their humor was very similar. I remember times with tears in my eyes from laughing so hard while reading over their chat sessions.  Chad was always very bubbly, friendly and really just had a positive attitude. Things could really be going awful for him, and he still had the ability to crack a joke, or just talk out things and end the conversation on a positive note.  Incredibly sweet individual who even after we all three quit playing for lack of time among other things, still would send us texts on our phones a couple times a month with simple messages like: “Smile friend!” and “*hugs you*”. Would chat with him on facebook occasionally, and send e-mails. Spoke to him every once in a while on the phone, and the kids even would talk to him. His common saying was “Its all good”, and that was one that Deon began to borrow in dealing with the early part of my MS diagnosis. “Whatever comes.. like Chad says.. ‘Its all good’, we’ll deal with it together”

A few months back we hadn’t heard anything from him in awhile. We knew he had some major health problems we were getting worried. Then one day out of the blue we got a message from him letting us know that he had been in the hospital, and that he was being transferred to yet another hospital. We tried to check on him as best we could, but communications understandably slowed down once he entered the second hospital. Christmas was our last text from him, wishing us a “Merry Christmas, I miss you guys, have a happy and safe one!” which we quickly replied with similar sentiments.

We had tried to contact him a couple times in the last month, but had not gotten any kind of response. Many of our last communications with him, he was always still pretty positive, but was commonly exhausted. Just tired.

This morning, we  again had tears in our eyes for a much different reason.  I was very sad to learn that Chad had passed away on the 5th due to complications of Congestive Heart Failure, diabetes, and kidney failure.  Ironic to me how someone who had one of the biggest hearts of anyone I ever knew would have “heart failure”.  Shows how separate our souls are from these bodies we inhabit.  My prayers go out to his family who have suffered an incredible loss, and to the rest of us who will be missing him as well.  Chad thank you for being our friend. We will miss you!

I will forever be glad I conceeded, and found the time to “play” with you and Deon, and the other truly wonderful people I met during that time. Sad to think had I “gotten my way”, I may have never of met you in the first place. Thankful that God doesn’t always let us “get our way”, but especially grateful that you are no longer suffering, and that you are with him now.

Till we meet again friend!

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