I can, I will
Those are the words on a watch Scott Dorsett wears. Those words also represent the essence of Scott’s new life.
It’s been 10 months since Scott was hit by a truck while jogging on a warm summer night – a night none of us will ever forget. It’s still hard to fathom how such a tragedy could occur. Even sadder is that we will likely never know how a man can jog across a two lane road at 9 o’clock at night and get run over. As I sat alone with Scott one Sunday morning not long ago, we began to talk about that night and what, if anything, he recalls. The harsh reality is that Scott doesn’t remember Wednesday, August 24, 2016.
Mostly, Scott talks in a soft, quiet murmur these days. Accentuated with thumbs up here or thumbs down there along with the shaking or nodding of his head, Scott communicates better now than he has since that night. On one hand, it’s heartbreaking to see the passion and enthusiasm with which Scott lived, and is known for, being held hostage by such traumatic injuries and lack of memory. On the other hand, witnessing the same passion and enthusiasm now being manifested by wanting people to see him walk 40 feet or wash dishes or ‘flop’ on his bed or climb a ladder … is as inspirational and moving as any experience I’ve ever had. Imagine the elation Scott feels when achieving higher levels of ability doing things that a year ago were done without a second of thought.
Despite all that’s happened in the past 10 months, Scott Dorsett is as smart as he’s ever been … and that’s saying something. Whether behind a lens, writing a story, providing IT expertise or having knowledge of all things Waxahachie, those of you who know Scott know how smart he is. That hasn’t changed. And, for those of you who have had the joy of being around Scott recently, you know he’s also as funny as he’s ever been. If I had a dime for every time I have to say “you can’t say that” or “you can’t text that”, I’d have lots more money to buy lots more Bama gear. Then there’s Scott’s propensity these days to belly laugh when he hears something he thinks is funny. Truth is, it’s as sweet a sound as there is and a sign that Scott is becoming more comfortable with expressing himself. Half of the time we spend together is spent in laughter, some as mature men and some, well, like obnoxious eight year olds. Whatever the reason or however we may look, such moments are some of the most special moments of my life.
In nearly every conversation I have with folks about Scott, the question of will Scott ever get back to his prior way of life comes up. While a fair and reasonable question, the truth is we don’t know. The bigger truth is that only God does. Whether the progress Scott has made is about as much a person who’s been through what Scott has can make, then so be it. If there is more progress to be made then so be that too. And, if God wants Scott to come hustling through the doors of the Daily Light with those pasty white bow legs and that familiar photographer’s jingle, then God will get the glory and life will carry on just as it did a year ago.
Whatever Scott’s new normal becomes, it won’t be normal. Instead, it will be an extraordinary life lived with a servants heart and unmatched love for others. The depth of such selfless love will never fade. Spend two seconds with Scott and you'll discover just how loved you are. While it may come today in the form of a gentle whisper, a warm hug, a bright smile or a tender kiss rather than racing from one side of the field to the other to get the perfect shot or working his magic at a community event to capture a lasting memory, Scott Dorsett will always be Scott Dorsett.
Notwithstanding the fact that most men our age don’t wear bracelets and that it may look as though we are clinging to the last vestiges of the coolness we never had, Scott and I wear bracelets that say the same thing. The purpose is to keep the unconditional, unchanging bond we share as a visible reminder of what’s most important in this life – the essence of profound friendship and abiding brotherly love. The inscription on those bracelets, an inscription I’m betting you know, says …
“He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother”
For as true and real as the breath I breathe, Scott Dorsett deserves as much love as a man can give his friend.