Friday, June 22, 2012

Mermaid-ready FeetAs I walked to the train this morning in the hot sun I started composing a post about my friend, Michael, who died last June. He spent the last few years of his life quadraplegic due to an accident. Re-friending him after the accident taught me, maybe both of us, a lot. There's much to say, my side of the story, my story to tell, but I hadn't felt ready to talk about it while he was alive.

A few more steps on I realized I was thinking about him because it was Friday. For almost five years, nearly every Friday, my day centered on whether I was meeting Michael for a movie. I became suddenly resentful that he was gone because if he was here I bet we'd have been watching Brave like half the people I'm friends with on Facebook. Resentful just a moment before I started to cry.

A lot of my friends, both on and off line, have been saying, "I just can't stop crying." One added, "It's like I'm leaking."

2012 has been, thus far, a very heavy year. I stole that descriptor from an actor-friend. He described a recent triumphant role as his "heavy man" and felt the joy of his lightness when the man was gone. This year has been weighty and ponderous. It's like the monster in a movie stalking us all on stomping feet, occasionally swiping at us but never predictably.

Maybe that makes it like any other year.

They all feel new, though, don't they?

So...I miss Michael. I wish my friends weren't crying. Still, though, I'm excited for tomorrow's mermaid shenanigans. My costume is assembled. Our departure time is set. My nails, all 20 of them, are silvered. Birthday cupcakes are nestled in tupperware ready for sharing and bribing and celebrating. We will laugh. We will laugh so long and so loud that we won't hear the steady tread of the monster.

He can't kill our joy.

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