Hello friends and gamers, December 4th is the anniversary of my step-dad’s passing. He has been gone for 3 years now. The emotional trauma and pain caused by a loss […]
Hello friends and gamers,
December 4th is the anniversary of my step-dad’s passing. He has been gone for 3 years now. The emotional trauma and pain caused by a loss never really gets easier with time. Some people try to comfort you by saying it. Personally, it’s still hard but I learned how to move forward… somehow.
For background information, my mom and my biological dad raised me. They took care of me for the first 17 years of my life. Ultimately, my parents divorced and separated during my junior year of high school. I’ve always been close with both of my parents. I still am.
Anyway, my mom remarried later on to my step dad, Ory. He is not who I consider as my father, but he did end up being my best friend for 5 years. Today, I make a toast to him: a tribute to Ory, my best friend.
Cystic Fibrosis (CF)
Gregory Sanford was born with cystic fibrosis. Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that mainly affects the lungs and digestive system. It affects the way your body controls salt, water, and mucus so it causes a lot of issues with breathing. Unfortunately, cystic fibrosis currently affects about 35,000 people in the United States and over 70,000 people around the world.
There has been a lot of research within the last few decades in prolonging the life for those who have cystic fibrosis. Life expectancy was not even 20 years old before the 1960s. Children born now with cystic fibrosis have a life expectancy of about 44 years. Although the disease is something nobody deserves, it is nice to see medicinal progress in furthering the life for humanity.
Ory Sanford: A Tribute
For 48 years, Ory fought against his CF dragon, which he named Effin. Out of breath or not, Ory was just a regular guy. If you ever talked to him, you’d honestly forget or not even know of his affliction with anything. He liked working out, playing video games, watching WWE, jamming out on his guitar, hanging out with his best buds, skateboarding, and he was just always in the mood to have fun and make silly jokes. And of course, he loved doing all kinds of crazy stuff with my mom.
One of my first memories I have when I met him was him going on and on about this Viking game. Turns out the game is literally called Viking: Battle for Asgard. I borrowed it from him and was genuinely surprised how much I enjoyed it. In fact, I liked it so much, I literally earned all of the achievements.
Because of his cystic fibrosis, his hands would shake a lot on some days. Sometimes they shook too much where he couldn’t hold a controller. I could tell how frustrated he was from that. But man, when his hands had a good day, he would play a long gaming session on Skyrim, Viking, Mass Effect, or anything else that fits the medieval era. I miss seeing his face glow from having so much fun. Video games were our first interaction that I will always cherish deeply
Grief does strange things to your mind. There is a fog — an impenetrable type of mental barrier which keeps me from ever looking at anything Arrowverse-related again. I haven’t been able to watch a single episode of the Arrowverse since he has passed. You see, Ory was always ahead of me on shows and had to wait for me to catch up. Mentally, I can’t press play and focus on an episode because I don’t want to be ahead now. It was like a fun inside joke that I needed to catch up… I shouldn’t be ahead. So I won’t be.
I never watched wrestling. Literally, like ever. I was one of those kids that thought it was stupid and not worth my time. Ory changed my perspective on the entertainment sport over the years. I don’t watch it by myself still, but I understand the energy and excitement that goes into it.
I now have a more open mind when it comes to someone’s happiness. You never know what they’re going through or experiencing. They are allowed to invest in hobbies and interests to escape from hardships caused in the struggle of everyday life. Basically, just let people enjoy things, you know?
Thor is his absolute favorite mythical being. Whether from Norse mythology or the Marvel Universe, Thor is a beacon of light for Ory. He would be super proud to know that with maxed-out stats, Thor is the strongest character in Square Enix’s Marvel’s Avengers game. And although I loved playing every Avenger character, I’m not going to lie, I did break down crying a few times while leveling up Thor. I know how much he would love to see the strength of Thor’s might.
There are a lot of memories I have of my best friend, but the last one I will share is when I got him a Fa-Thor shirt for Father’s Day. “FaThor – like a dad, but way cooler. See also, handsome and exceptional.” The shirt was perfect because it emphasized our relationship. He wasn’t my first dad, but he was my best friend and second father who was always there if needed. I loved spending time with Ory and talking about all of our nerd topics. I really miss talking to him, you know?
Rest In Peace
Ory stood tall and brave, fought the good fight, and stayed kind even through such a painful disease. I hope there’s a special piece of Valhalla carved out just for him even though he was a die-hard Christian man to the end. He was thoughtful, energetic, full of life, and was a huge source of optimism that I truly needed as I was going through some hardcore pessimistic stages of my early adult life. I love you, Ory. Rest in peace ✌️