Well... I really have no clue why I'm writing this out, save that I really need to get it off my chest. I don't really have someone specific that I can talk to ... so instead, I'll talk to the anonymity at large...
Everyone's likely seen a movie where a guy (or girl) is dying and his wife (or her husband) is there by the hospital bed (crouched in the streets, etc) and is able to talk to the person, to say goodbye... to attain closure. The person dies, and then there is mourning... Sometimes other family is there too ... so that they can say goodbye to the hospitalized person.
They have it all wrong in the movies. A week ago, I got a phone call at work, and had to leave to rush to the hospital. My cousin, Jeff, had taken a turn for the worse. He'd only complained of stomach pains a week before... and when I arrived, I was told the doctors gave him two hours left, if that. He was so out of it he couldn't open his eyes. His breathing came slowly, forcedly. Life support is the only reason I was able to see him in his final hour... and I almost wish that I hadn't. Almost.
When his heartbeat finally stopped, and he drew his last breath, his sister said that Jeff was dead. She was mistaken. It wasn't Jeff that died, that day ... it was his wife. I saw it in her eyes as his heart stopped... she had died. I could see it in the way that she stared at him, in the tears. Her reason for living had just left her behind when he passed away.
I can't stop thinking about her face... her expression. I can't help but feel worse for her than for my own loss, or for Jeff himself. After he died, he no longer felt the pain of life. But she will. Dying is easy, it's living that's hard.
Please live your life to the fullest. For those in love, be sure to tell them how much you love them. It is your responsibility to make sure that those who will mourn your passing... those who you hurt when you leave them ... will have enough fond memories of you to make the pain you will inflict on them worth it.