Tuesday, September 3, 2013
Last week I learned on Facebook that the boy that was my freshman year of college passed away, "suddenly and unexpectedly," to quote his obituary. We drifted apart in college and I haven't talked to him since we graduated, more or less, which was ten years ago. Though I probably would have never talked to him again -- I even hid his profile from my Facebook feed, because our friendship seemed outdated and lopsided, like I would always care more that he did -- I feel the loss tremendously.
He was such an unbelievably self-possessed spirit. When I met him, along with a few other truly excellent individuals on the sidewalk outside of the Rubin Dormitory on 5th Ave & 10th Street, it felt like I found my people. He loved music, and we spent the year of 1999-2000 going to live shows in the city or blasting music in our dorm rooms. He went on to be a live music sound engineer, and he travelled the world in that capacity. I don't know what exactly took him from this Earth so soon, but I suspect it wasn't good.
In trying to find some meaning in his death, I thought about my life when I knew him. I dove headlong into memories, and read almost every page of my old journals and poetry books. I found email exchanges with old friends, and was washed over with the person I was more than a decade ago. I was searching for something, or someone, who could go with me through this life, steadfastly. For one short period of time, my friend Adam was that person.
The fierce openness with which I searched for something to fill me up scares me now. I would never want to go back to that, but I do miss that feeling of not knowing what will happen next, or who I might meet that would bend my life. When a piece of paper 7 inches wide and 1 inch tall fell out of my journal with a list of things 10 things I wanted to do, I saw a reflection of a girl that I forgot I was.
I've had my head down, in a lot of ways, for a lot of years. I've been plugging away. At what? Inner peace, love, family, sophisticated ladydom, tax paying... Adam's death has me picking my head up and wondering, what do I really want? I used to feel like I had nothing to lose and a real sense of what I could be. Now that I have a lot of things that I want, it's hard to resist the temptation to hold on too tight. Can I throw my hat up in the air of adventure to see where it lands in 2013 like I did in 2003? It's started an interesting conversation.
10 things --
1. learn how to use quark
2. be a hard core babysitter of jamie carly alexandra
3. take really long bike rides
3. get freckly
4. find an excellent apartment
5. write for the new yorker vogue nyt magazine jane
6. find a nice guy
7. start a dance troop
8. drive through canada, mexico
9. go to cuba and speak lots of spanish
10. move to rome
If you'll notice, my list of ten actually consists of eleven, as I have two number 3s. I've never been as conscientious as I pretend to be.
I'll miss you Adam. You were a kindred spirit, a spitfire and a savior. I loved you, like so many others.