Remembering a loved one who recently passed.

Ben was a beautiful soul. He was passionate about his interests. He was very well self-educated. He gave love and acceptance freely and without strings attached. He left this world prematurely at the tender age of 31, due to stage four ovarian cancer.

Oledvis was the first name I knew him under. We met during an event at a place of mutual interest. I was drawn to his kindness and his aura. We found we had quite a few things in common, like writing and learning about astrology.

Ben was very family oriented. He lived with his mom — who he spoke of often. He depended on her very much. Plus he was always helping his grandmother and his aunt around their houses and yards.

He comforted me during one of my emotional aftermaths of losing friends. I was there for him during a time when his consent was violated. I was also an ear for him when he went through a couple of painful breakups.

He kept a lot of different and interesting blogs. He wrote cool and imaginative stories, which his followers looked forward to the next installments of. Of course, he blogged about his daily life and interests as well.

Like me, Ben was extremely introverted. Outside of reading, researching, writing, and indulging in his interests, he made cute items to sell. He led a quiet but satisfyingly isolated life. Though he was looking for love, he was who he was, and he was happy.

He'd always had quite painful menstrual cycles. A lot of times we had to put off our meetups so he could spend a significant amount of time in his bed to relieve the pain. His immune system wasn't that great, as his asthma crept up on him without warning sometimes. Whenever he traveled (which was quite a bit), he always ended up sick upon return.

However, nothing prepared me for when he told me of his diagnosis. We'd spoken on and off for quite a bit, then he was silent for a while. Then came the diagnosis. He was moved to hospice care right after the results, where he would live for the rest of his life. He didn't know how much time he had left. They just told him it was the end of life care. The cancer had spread to his lungs, liver, and lymph nodes.

I still can't wrap my head around the suddenness of his tragedy. How could this have not been detected sooner? How could they not know how long he had to live? Why was he robbed of the chance to finally find lasting love? To see his stories published? To spread the magnificence of his person to leave a greater dent in the world? Why did this have to happen to him?

A week after telling me of his diagnosis, Ben died on July 25, 2018, at 6:30 a.m.

A lot of people had fond memories of the Captain Jack Sparrow costume he rocked last Halloween. I will remember the times and laughs and tears we shared. I will remember his perpetually positive attitude even as he faced death. I'll remember his gorgeous blonde hair, his bright eyes, and his smile. I'll miss the hangout we should have had at Taco Bell downtown and his hospital room. I'll miss sharing such an important part of myself with someone who shared the interest. I'll miss hanging out on our "Fetty the Teddy" and coloring together. I'll miss him being in my corner.

Benny Oledvis, my brother from another mother. May you feel no more pain and find all the love you craved in Heaven. I was lucky to have known you.

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