Sunday, March 15, 2009

It's proof of god's love

I say that to my children frequently, about all kinds of sweet things- ice cream, kittens, flowers, you name it.

It is a lovely line.

I picked it up from a very dear old friend.

This month marks ten years that he has been dead.

I know it feels like my entire life if punctuated with depressing anniversaries, and links to the past, and I suppose to some extent it is.

I am a creature of habit, and just because you die, doesn't necessarily mean I will stop loving you.

It still makes me really sad, that he never got to meet my children, or see me as a mom.

So much of who I am comes from my relationship, and long friendship with him.

His daughter phoned me to tell me he had died, the night I came home from the hospital, from giving birth to my son.

I completely lost my mind on the phone.

I was a terrible friend to this girl, that had just lost her primary parent.

I wish I could go back in time and have a more composed, supportive reaction.

All I could say was

"no, no, no. That can't BE RIGHT. Oh, Jonny how can you be dead? I am so sorry.
I just had a baby and I don't feel very well, I am so sorry".


She sent me a nice little card with a photo, and told me she would contact me for the big memorial sometime in summer, but she never did.

I imagine she had a lot on her mind, and dealing with her father's hysterical ex-girlfriend was not a priority.

I met Jonathan, when I was 18.

He was my boss, and I adored him.
I loved my job.
I thought he was the most sincere, smart and socially conscious person I had ever met.
I wanted that kind of social consciousness.
I wanted to be a social worker, that people adored and responded to, just like him.
I quit my job to be with him.
I left a perfectly nice boyfriend my age to be with him.
I ignored my studies, got bad grades, went sailing, keeleded over in freezing water up to my knees, just to be with him.
I ate beans and rice and drank Irish whiskey to be with him.
I lived in his hideous, dirty house in a bad neighborhood, just to be with him.

He was funny, delightful, outrageous and he had an amazing record collection.
We had an amazing relationship and friendship.

After we split up, we remained friends.
I eased into being a real adult, and He got old, sickly, and fragile.

He loved going out with me, he loved bring me to family functions, just to mess with his middle class sister.

I loved his sailboat, his voice, that he lived in a tough neighborhood and kept an axe handle under the seat of the car. I love that he had attended the March on Washington, refused to own a clothes dryer, had a dog named Moshe, and raised his kids on his own.

I saw him in person for the last time, in 1997. I don't recall why. I think we went to a movie, with his son.

He moved to an island to be more serious about sailing.

I continued to write him silly letters, addressed to "Dear Jonafin".

Then I got busy with my life, my new boyfriend, and having a baby.

and then he was dead.

Thanks Jonathan. Knowing you was proof of god's love.

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