Appreciate every second

Appreciate every second

This post has nothing to do with working out or eating clean, but more to do with life in general. There has been something weighing on my mind and my heart for the past couple of days, which has since altered my thinking about things.

Rob watches a decent amount of sports but the only ones I watch with him are rugby and MotoGP (but I usually get bored after a few laps). Rob loves motorcycles and had one for a little more than a year back when we lived in Perth, despite my obvious protests.

Usually because of the time difference, we watch the bike races late at night. But this week, the race was in Asia – at the exact same time as the Rugby World Cup final. So we agreed to watch the rugby and flick over to the MotoGP for a few seconds during any quiet breaks in the game.

The first time we flipped over, the race had already been red flagged. We had just missed a horrible crash on the second lap between three riders, one of whom – Marco Simoncelli – had received a bike travelling hundreds of miles an hour straight into his back and neck. In a spine-tingling scene, the force of the crash actually knocked his securely-fastened helmet off his head. After the accident, the other two riders pulled off to the side but Marco lay face down on the tarmac, not moving.

After he had been carried away on a stretcher, there was a bit of a delay where no one seemed to know what was going on, but then the race was officially cancelled. That’s never a good sign, as that is usually only done out of respect when something serious has happened. Rob and I speculated that Marco may have been permanently paralysed, but a short while later it was tragically announced that he had died shortly after impact from head and neck injuries.

Dead. Just like that. His life was taken in less than a second. My heart sunk and I felt sick to my stomach. For the first time in my life, I had just watched a man – who was only 24 – die. The crash was replayed over and over on the news – watching the tape at normal speed made it difficult to see what actually happened, but the slowed version was just sickening. Looking at it you just knew there was no way anyone could have survived.

We watched the rest of the rugby but my mind was completely occupied on what we had just seen. I was significantly shaken and teary. I thought of Marco’s family, friends, his girlfriend (who was at the race) and the whole community of riders who never got a chance to say goodbye to him.

I haven’t been able to get the image out of my head for two days, and I had trouble sleeping on Sunday night. Every time I see Rob I just want to smother him with hugs and kisses, even more so than usual. I’ve become paranoid that every time I see him will be the last.

I don’t know why this event had such a strong impact on me. There are always deaths in the news, but it normally doesn’t reverberate with me so strongly. Perhaps because it was someone I was fond of, or perhaps it’s purely because Rob had a motorcycle himself (and actually wants to get another one). He took me out for a drive on the day he first bought it, and the first thing I did when I got off the bike was burst into tears because I was convinced he was going to die. Every time he was even a minute late coming home, I would always assume that there had been a terrible accident.

Rob back in the day

A few comments I have read about the accident said at least Marco died doing something that he loved. If I was close to him, that wouldn’t matter at all. If Rob died riding a motorbike, it would probably hurt worse than if he randomly got hit by a bus – because I would have known in advance how dangerous it is.

Imagine your life being gone that quickly. It could happen at any minute. Would you be happy with the life you have lived this far? Would you be happy with the decisions you’ve made, the way you’ve acted, and the people you’ve loved? Would you regret the relationships you didn’t mend, the risks you didn’t take and the dreams you haven’t yet fulfilled?

Get out there and seize your goals with passion. Reach your full potential with every day, and don’t waste a single second. Life is too short.

RIP Marco

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