You may meet hundreds of new people as time goes by but only a few of these are keepers.
My two dear friends were keepers and i knew this from the moment i met them. We have been through many tough times together and have managed to come out smiling, our children have grown up together and we have grown up together too in many ways.
The first time Steve was ill their little boy was a toddler and his daughter a bit older it was a major shock to everyone and something of a life and death emergency. Max had never been away from home before but came to stay with us whilst his daddy was rushed to hospital, I looked at him that night on the sofa cuddled up to my little girl who was about the same age, they sat together drinking their bottles of milk and snuggling their blankets at bed time. We had tears in our eyes looking at that little boy and wondering if his daddy and our dear friend would ever see him go to school, go to cubs, would he ever take him fishing? and do all of those things a daddy should do.
Miraculously he amazingly came through we could barely breathe all day waiting for the news but the transplant had been successful. A few years later bad luck was to befall him again and he became very ill needing another transplant, I spent most of the operation duration on the end of the telephone whilst his wife was there at the hospital in pieces, he very nearly did not come through but if anyone knows Steve he was a fighter and he beat all odds.
Sadly on Friday night this brave man who never once moaned about his health lost his fight for life, a simple life where all he wanted to do was work and care for his family, i suppose we should be grateful that he did survive those extra precious years so that he could take his boy fishing and do all of those things that they did together, A quote i read today on his Facebook page was 'This was the most gentle, funny and nicest man ever' with a picture. Well I cannot think of a more perfect description, all I have to say is that it was a pleasure to know you Steve and you will never be forgotten.
I wrote this story for a children's book compilation all those years ago its about the night that the most precious thing in my friends life was entrusted to me. I never told them we were up quite late in to the night making up stories and looking out of the window because he wanted mummy and daddy, we were fine though we ended up having lots of fun and this is basically what happened. Rest assure Steve we will now always be entrusted with your precious things and will always promise to look out for them. Rest in peace beautiful man.
Ode to Steve one of life's keepers
Max and me
There once was a boy, who came to stay with me
His name was Max and he was three
Odd things started happening really quite soon
When Max said ‘Hey look there’s an elephant in my room’
‘ Oh yes’ I said, pretending I could see
‘I’ll call the zoo keeper so that he
Can catch that elephant, what is in your room
So I called him quick, he came quite soon.
‘Can you hear the stomping?’ Max said to me.
‘LOOK up there! a monkey in that tree’
I looked outside and pretended he was right
And then I called the zoo keeper for the second time that night.
‘Cant get to sleep!’ shouted max again
Look at the ceiling, a hippo flying a plane!’
‘Oh yes I replied ‘So there is’
Ill call the keeper back, he’ll be here in a whizz!’
‘A witch on a broom with a fish on a stick’
‘Oh goodness me ill call someone quick!’
But who should I call?
The fish was not small.
The big nosed witch was dressed in black
She’s even got a giant cat’
We sat and we thought Max and me
We’ll call a wizard, would you agree??
So the wizard came wearing a big tall hat
He came with a wand and a cricket bat.
I was puzzled now
And so was the cow
Who suddenly appeared?
Next to the elephant, who now had a beard?
The room was so full; it had always been empty,
I started with Max
But now I had plenty
An elephant some monkeys a zoo keeper too,
Who looked at me strangely quite unsure what to do
The witch and the fish, the stick and the wizard
And out of the window it was striking a blizzard
What a strange night…….So max and me
Lay down in his bed and counted to three.
Tired little Max closed his eyes,
I opened mine and what a surprise
The elephants and all they had been here so long,
Now Max was asleep and they were all gone.
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