Okay, so it’s 6:00 in the morning. I am here in my usual spot, on the porch, feet up, cup of warm tea steadily cooling by my side, my laptop quietly streaming music from www.radioparadise.com, the morning birds singing, my sons still sleeping and it’s time to write my blog. The Memorial Day weekend is spread-out before me and my mind is moving slowly from one idea to the next, but it keeps settling back in one place. Only it feels funny to write about something so personal. Nonetheless, little else is rising to the surface and it’s where I am.
Tomorrow I am going to a memorial service/party for an old friend who died last week from complications due to leukemia. He was someone who lived his life fully and loudly and he will be remembered and missed by an extensive network of family and friends. He has not been a regular part of my life for many, many years, but at one point in time he was a significant and notable presence. He was the best friend of an old boyfriend and a very real and significant person in a large and intensely close circle of friends that surrounded this core group of people. In more recent years, I would run into him occasionally at the annual Christmas party given by my old boyfriend’s brothers and oddly enough at the dentist (the brother of another old friend and member of this same group of folks.) It feels almost impossible to describe the intensity of connection within this group of people and the impact and personality of this one pivotal person as there is a larger than life quality to both.
So tomorrow, rather than driving down to see my boyfriend and family as originally planned, I will be going back to a place from my past and seeing people who once were fixtures in my daily existence and now are more loosely connected to my present life. It will be a remembrance and a party – cause that’s just the way it should be to honor and remember this man who touched the lives of so many people. Some of these people I have had intense personal relationships with, some I have only heard about through my continued friendship with some folks and all will be grieving and celebrating the life of this one unique soul. It is very sad to come together for this reason and it is a beautiful testament to a life. I have never known of any other group of people whose bond has lasted this long and who have remained so closely interconnected. It is a powerful and amazing phenomenon and I am proud to be a part of it, if only through a handful of people at this juncture in my life.
He was a devoted father, an artist and a person of uncompromising individuality and despite the fact that he has not been a regular and direct part of my life for many years, I can’t help but feeling like the world is forever changed now that he is no longer out there doing his thing. What I also know is that it is indeed true that he will live on forever in the hearts and minds of the people who knew and loved him. Rest in peace, Paul.