Monday, June 28, 2010
Spring in my step
The untimely loss of a friend can elicit many emotions, anger, hurt, sorrow, melancholy. All those things left unsaid and undone, the things you wish you could take back or celebrating the time you did have. People come and go in your life, some remain "lifers" those friends that stay with you for the duration and then there's the set that come in, serve their purpose and move on. When public figures die, even though they are not our close associations, we feel a sense of loss to the talent gone or whatever. It's been a year since Michael Jackson died, his presence was so iconic that his death became one of those "where were you when you heard" moments.
I was driving home, alone in the car with the radio, the news came on at the same time that a friend called. Due to hands-free communication and the news reader, there was a simultaneous announcement that the King of Pop was no more. Michael Jackson was like an old friend, he'd featured in many happy and not so rosy periods in my life. Off the Wall and Thriller the soundtrack of much of my early high school years. Before heavy metal and then the new romantics, before a foray into punk. And though he'd been out of the spotlight for a long time, his music was always there in the background. Ironically, that particular friend is also no longer a part of my life. A loss more to do with differences of opinion, values and even bloody mindedness. It was a friendship that while it lasted, meant a great deal and though there are no regrets that we were friends, it perhaps is a relationship that could not survive. My friend and I have drifted far, perhaps some other time.
Lately my muse has also wandered far, the urge to write is always tempered by the thought that if the floodgates opened I would be like the little Dutch boy, trying to hold back the endless tides. More sobering, the loss of desire to comment but to just watch it all unfold while hoping for the best. It feels almost like looking through old pictures of yourself, seeing the progression of years, acknowledging fondly the person you were but knowing that the time is past, looking forward to what's next.
It's like doing home renovations, you ever notice that when you re-do one area everywhere that you've left alone looks tired, dated, grungy or just doesn't fit? You go through room by room to find that ideal mix of old and new, paint and accessories or more sweeping changes of broken walls and ceilings, lighting fixtures and furniture. That's like your own life, the things that don't work show up more sharply against the newly reformed areas! If you are never open to change, then you can never experience anything new, if you don't take out the things that are old, tired and non working, if you your hands are full, you cannot pick up anything else. This weekend I decided to re-paint the corridor and area outside the bathroom. The colour is unlike the rest of the house, a neutral, Sand Dollar it is called. My house is filled with blues, greens and yellows so this is really outside the box. The newness of fresh paint made me look again, more so than late last year when I re-did the living room(which I still like!). Now the bathroom needs doing, the kitchen cupboards, they all look tired and grotty in comparison. Ironically though, instead of the solid black or grey that has made up the bulk of my wardrobe for the last four or five years, bright colours have made a re-appearance. And though not as ebullient as Maradona kissing all his players during this World Cup, I'm smiling more.
So like a plant that has had some pruning, new leaves are forming and branches taking shape. The structure remains, tested by fire, love, joy and adversity, new things opening up. Perhaps even a bloom or two.