So I attended my first funeral this week. It was for my childhood friend, Jackie, who passed away this month from cancer at the age of 25.
Jackie’s funeral was the first one I’ve had to attend. It was all so strange and foreign to me.
Lately I’ve been thinking about the concept of feeling bad for not feeling bad.
Mostly, this stems from the recent passing of my friend. His death has greatly saddened me and our enclosed circle, and even though I consider our circle to be the people who love him the most, for some reason we feel as if we don’t feel sad enough.
My dear friend Jackie passed away at the age of 25 this week in the comfort of his hospice with his parents and girlfriend, Fatima, in his room and his 4 childhood friends waiting in the living room outside.
Jackie’s battle with cancer had been dragging on and all of us knew death was upon us but even then there was chaos in our calmest state. I will never forget the moment of pain and love we shared at 10:32 when he left us and we sat there with our hands held tightly together in silent tears.
I have never lost someone I love before. Grief is unfamiliar to me and the way I see grief is that it is love with nowhere to go.
This week I came across this article: VIA Rail is giving away FREE cross-Canada tickets this summer
As some of you may know, I was one of the lucky 4000 youth pass-holders who was able to purchase a $150 unlimited train pass for the month of July to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday.
Real love exists and I finally witnessed it with my own eyes and heart last month when I slept over at the hospice my friend is currently staying at.
I was looking forward to the sleepover and spending time with two of my favourite people. My friend and his girlfriend were worried I’d feel uncomfortable staying over at the hospice and that I wouldn’t be well-rested enough for work the next day, but none of those things mattered to me. We put on face masks (“Don’t walk down the dark hallway with that, you’re gonna give people heart attacks.”) and chatted about life and our memories.
As we tried to sleep for the night, my friend started to experience hallucinations from his medications. He would talk out loud and try to move or grab things and had a difficult time getting good sleep. Every time he woke up, his girlfriend would be by his side.
I first met Jackie when we were in the 6th grade. He confessed he liked me with a big bag of candy made up of 25 cent candy pieces from our middle school cafeteria. He belonged in the class across the hall from mine, but I had never really spoken to him.
I took the candy he gave me anyways.
Lately I’ve been wondering if I had already passed my happiest point in life and I find myself secretly hoping that things can go back to the way it used to be. I even catch myself really believing that can actually happen.
I understand that we don’t know what’s around the corner. Maybe tomorrow something amazing will happen, maybe my next moment will be the new happiest point in my life. It is unlikely.
My heart is always down on the ground.
I’m afraid of everything around me.
Everyone says that I’ll be happy when I fall in love
But its only when I see your back
that I feel like I’m in love.
If it was you
how would it feel?
If these crazy days became yours?
If I were you
I would just love me.
I know you already answered me
I know very well the meaning of an answerless answer
but I’m still lingering around pretending not to know.
Do you know how I’m doing these days?
I can’t fall asleep
I can’t even swallow anything.
Do you know that I become more ruined the more I look at you?
Even though it feels like I’m dying
and even though there’s no hope of you coming back
even though I know you are looking somewhere else now
I don’t think that I can
let you go.
Awhile back I read The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck and one of my key takeaways from that book was to pursue the negative for a positive outcome. Instead of avoiding things I don’t want to do or say, actually doing them is what (theoretically) leads to a positive experience.
A more concrete example of this is to just say fuck it and do something that scares you, and you will find that the experience itself is no longer scary. And in overcoming this, you actually become braver, which is your desired outcome at the end of the day.
I’ve been trying to implement this into my life is with my insecurities and I have to admit, not giving as many fucks has generally made my life a little better.