Closure

I’m currently sitting at the airport waiting for my boarding call1. I’ll short board my flight to Seattle. I tweeted last night that I was “going to bed. Leaving for Seattle in the morning.” I received several concerned comments from friends regarding my trip back to seattle, so let me first allay your fears of some impending doom in my life: I am fine. I am simply flying back to Seattle for Ben Towne’s memorial service. I will return on Sunday.

The complete reason behind my desire to attend his memorial service are a mystery even to me. As best I can tell, it’s 33% for me, 34% for Jeff and Carin, and 33% for Ben:

For Ben, I was fortunate enough to meet him a couple times when I was helping Jeff with some computer issues. This was over the summer of 2008 and at that time Ben’s prognosis (at least in my mind) was good. He loved the movie Cars and had an extensive collection of Hot Wheel’s that I’m pretty sure rivaled mine when I was his age.

For Jeff and Carin, because of what Jeff has done for me (perhaps without even knowing it). Jeff (along with a few other key players) was instrumental in my high school Christian experience; and for that, I will always be thankful. Jeff has always been a fantastic youth minister and I hope that he returns to it. I’ve met Carin many times and she’s an absolutely wonderful and energetic person. She’s also a great, and at times humorusly sarcastic, writter. Her updates to Ben’s CaringBridge site were an amazing insight into the hard journey she and Jeff have taken.

For me, this is not the first time I’ve had to deal with a someone dying from cancer, nor (unfortunately) do I suspect it will be my last. Several years ago (early 90’s), I had a cousin, Jesse, die from cancer. The part that makes it difficult was the age difference. Jesse was only 5 months older than me. She was also the only older cousin I had. Her death put a two+ year gap between me and my next eldest cousin, Katie, who is about the same age as Brian (my brother). I didn’t realize it fifteen years ago, and I still can’t grasp the full ramifications of her death. How would my life changed had someone closer to my age been around? We both would have been out of college right now. For years after her passing, my Aunt and Uncle had a bell called the Jesse Bell. I haven’t seen it in recent years and I sometimes wonder where it went.

Over the last couple of days, I’ve asked myself if it’s even worth it to come all this way. Sometimes I think yes, other times I think not. My hope is that I can get can some resolution, both on Ben and Jesse.


  1. Well, I was when I started writing this post. I’m now in Seattle 

Lost, Angry, Confused, Helpless, Hopeless

From www.caringbridge.org:

Thursday, October 30

Scans yesterday revealed that the cancer in Ben has aggressively progressed since the end of July. There are four new tumors – three on his brain and one on his liver.

We will be starting full brain radiation tomorrow at UW Hospital. They will do this for two weeks – in the hopes of reducing the swelling in Ben’s brain and slowing the cancer from metastasizing to his other organs. In two weeks they will scan him again and from there we will make some very difficult decisions.

We are lost and in complete despair. At this time we ask that you please respect our privacy. We will not be taking visitors. Thank you.

Jeff and Carin

Lost, angry, confused, helpless, hopeless. Just some of what I’m feeling. I really don’t know where to begin.

1 My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?
Far from my deliverance are the words of my groaning.
2O my God, I cry by day, but You do not answer;
And by night, but I have no rest.

-Psalm 22:1-2

For a long time, I’ve dreaded the though of seeing a post:

“Ben passed away last night…”

This isn’t that post. In some ways, though, I think it’s worse. I don’t think people are afraid of death, people are afraid of dying…the process of death. The process is what haunts us. If we just went to bed one night and the next morning we woke up in heaven, I think everyone would be pretty happy with that. So to see a post like this, that is what makes me sad. Ben is dying.

How can I keep putting off the what is surely the inevitable? I’m having to reject every ounce of logic in my being just to hold out hope for Ben.

What do I pray for now? A miraculous healing? A merciful and peaceful passing?

What do I do?

Post script: The world seems very small now. Politics. War. Homework. School. Halloween. They don’t seem relevant now. For God’s sake, a child is dying! How can anything else matter?

Mad at God

I’m mad at God right now. Last night, Duane told us all that Jeff and Carin were at Children’s Hospital and that it appears that Ben Towne probably has cancer.

I feel a sickness in the pit of my stomach and the very first thing I thought of was Jesse. Not again. Why are you doing this again?

Welcome Home Baby Ben!

Carin Towne is back home, safe and sound with Benjamin Towne. I talked with Jeff last week right after I heard their baby was born. The connection was unbelievably bad, but Carin and Ben were fine and Jeff sounded like he could sleep for a week. In any event: Welcome Home Baby Ben!

Because Some People Aren’t In The Loop

So, Annie Mesaros sent out an email today:

Guess who’s pregnant.

OK, I’ll just tell you:
Jeff and Carin Towne.
I KNOW!
Could I BE more excited? No.
-Annie

This news comes shortly (a few months) after Tim and Saranell Hartman declared they were expecting. I hope a trend is not starting.

Chorus: Well it’s been a long, been a long, been a long, been a long day!

Whew! What a weekend. On Saturday I had the pleasure of waking up at 7am in the morning to film my latest movie, Orion. It’s actually a music video and it’s going to be awesome. Anyways, I filmed until about 5 and then I had to run up to Lynnwood to drop of some equipment. This, and traffic, unfortunately, caused be to be late to the closing night of my musical. I did arrive before the curtain went up, but not before causing mass panic and some chaos.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying was a smashing success, to say the least. Quinn remarked, “Quality. It’s worth seeing if you didn’t see it tonight. Lots of good acting and overall a good production. It’s long, but not boring.” Duane remarked that he was “impressed with the high school production.  Better than the drama program was in my high school.” The play was rather long, running in just under three hours. I also cannot give enough praise to the entire cast. Being someone who likes to do whatever I activity I’m engaged in to the best of my ability, I’m often in the company of persons who don’t share that same feeling. This was not the case for this musical. Everybody had something very important invested in this production and everybody wanted the production to succeed…no pun intended. But I digress. Closing night was wonderful. We had a great cast party and later went to IHOP for about an hour. I got back home at 12:30ish and watched some Star Trek until 3am. Gotta’ love the Trek!

On Sunday, I had the esteemed pleasure to give the focus at The Edge. This story actually goes back to Tuesday night. I came home from Dress Rehearsal at about 10 and shortly after I walked in the door, Jeff Towne called me up and asked me to do the focus. I was pretty ecstatic at the time, although I’m not sure if I conveyed that adequately over the phone. Back to Sunday though. I woke up at 1pm and worked on my focus for the rest of the afternoon pretty much.

Monday was a pretty non-eventful.

That brings me to today. I woke up this morning at 6 to help out at the Cascade Land Conservancy. The CLC was having their annual awards banquet at the Westin Hotel in Downtown Seattle and they needed some AV help. I was more than happy to oblige, especially if it meant free food…which it did. Always a sucker for free food. Alec Turnbull was there as well as Nora Johnson. Nora is actually interning CLC for her Senior Project. Alec is interning at a travel agency somewhere Downtown. If you didn’t know, I’m interning at the UW. I should make a Senior Intern page sometime.

The event lasted until about 9am. In addition to breakfast, I also received a bag of coffee from Starbucks, a CLC hat, and, my personal favorite, a name tag with my name on it. The latter part of the morning was filled with more working graduation announcements. This afternoon I went to the Maxillofacialist. For those of you who don’t know what a Maxillofacialist is, they’re the ones responsible for pulling wisdom teeth. Fun stuff. I’m tentatively scscheduled to have surgery on June 10th at 9am.

Daniel Busyhead wanted me to mention him, so now I am. That also reminds me about this so called “Backwards day.” It’s the one where you give an answer to someone they don’t like and then they say, “But today is backwards day so everything you say is just the opposite.” Well, I have news for you. Backwards day cannot logically exist. If one claims that it is backwards day, and it were truly backwards day, that claiming that it was backwards day actually means that it’s not backwards day. If that doesn’t make any sense…well…it shouldn’t make any sense really.

And finally, for those who are wondering what the hell the title of this blog means; it’s a line from one of the songs in How to.