Monday, March 2, 2015

Rest in Peace, Oren Miller

The Dadosphere was hit with kind of a body blow a couple of days ago when we heard that Oren Miller, founder of the Dad Bloggers Group on Facebook and author of the blog Blogger Father, lost his battle with cancer this past weekend.

It was expected-- his wife had announced a few days before that the medication was no longer working, and that they were just going to make Oren comfortable, but it's a body blow none the less.  It shakes you to the core.  At least it's shaken me.

People die everyday, and you expect that-- after all, it's part of the agreement with life, that it ends, but Oren was a father of two young kids, a great guy, and far too young.   I kept on expecting some kind of miracle, because if there are miracles where people overcome impossible odds, manage to beat Old Man Cancer, it happens to guys like Oren.  Guys who deserve them.

Not this time.

I met Oren a couple of times I think-- at a couple of Dad 2.0 Summits, and we corresponded a little bit when we were doing Digital Family Summit in Baltimore.  His kids were too young to attend, but he was supportive of the event, and gave me a few ideas of people to call in the area.  We had a great dinner in Houston together, talking about all kinds of cool stuff. And our kids.  And dick jokes.  You know, Dad stuff.

A friend just posted a question on line if I feel guilty about Oren passing-- why him, not me?

I feel bad that he went, but I don't think I feel guilt-- I feel fear. Fear that I am next.  Not to be depressing or anything, but we are all going to die someday- you, me, your beautiful children, that mean lady from the DMV.  On this train, everybody gets their ticket punched.  The question is, how are you going to handle it?

Oren handled it like a Zen master-- he took it in stride, he wrote about it, he made his peace.  I am afraid that when I go, I will be kicking and screaming and groveling in the corner.

I had a health issue a couple of weeks ago (Just before the Dad 2.0 summit)that required me to go to the emergency room, and I really had some thoughts about what would happen when I wasn't around, the "legacy" such as it that I would leave. It wasn't pretty.  I passed through that okay, but I've got a whiff of my mortality, and it scared the hell out of me.

I've been operating as if I had unlimited time.   And I don't.  No one does.  I'm 9 years older than Oren was.  I'm 3 years older than when my dad was killed in a car accident.  And I've had two or three friends in their 40's/50's just die in their sleep.  Nothing seemed wrong, they just didn't wake up.  Horrible.  And although my grandmother died at 104 and my grandfather died at 89 (a cigar salesman, he died of throat cancer), that's still not unlimited time.  30 years if I'm lucky.  Puts my new 30 year mortgage in perspective.

Oren Miller- 1974-2015.  Rest In Peace.
Oren: when my ticket gets punched, I only hope that I can handle it with the kind of grace and elegance that you handled it.  READ HIS WORDS.

I don't think I will.  You set a very high standard.

Rest in peace, my friend.

Baltimore Sun Obit

Article & Video about Oren- Baltimore Sun "Finding Heaven On Earth"

Pinterest Group-- Oren Miller RIP

Oren's Blog - Blogger

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