This past weekend marked nine years since the loss of one of my nearest and dearest. I've written something about it here for the past few years and felt remiss in not doing so this year, so here we are. I feel a bit rusty coming back to the blog, so I guess this is as good a place to start as any.
The weekend of the anniversary I was doing a show with a small group of some other nearest and dearests of mine. It was a pet project of sorts that we had scraped together all on our very own out of common interest, desire, and talent. I opened my dinosaur of a Caboodle the night before we opened (yes, I do still have a Caboodle and yes, it is purple with sparkles) to the picture of Jaime and me doing Tea in the Nutcracker that has been there for nine years now. It still makes me catch my breath a little, and shake my head, and smile. That's why it's still there, I guess. And as a reminder, not only of him, but of the kind of performer I want to be and am capable of being. Dancing onstage with Jaime was a delight and an honor and a joy, and I never want to forget that feeling and the desire to recapture it in other performances. There was no better place to honor and remember him than onstage, and no better people to be with than the four that shared the stage with me.
The odd part of this particular anniversary for me personally is that I am on the cusp of turning 28, which is how old Jaime was when we lost him. It is so strange and sad to me that from that birthday on I will always be older than my memories of him. It was impossible to think of Jaime as "old", but he was just enough older than me that it seemed distant. Almost thirty is so far away when you're barely twenty. But here I am, and I realize with dizzying clarity just how young Jaime really was. Just how much he didn't get to do, how much he didn't get to see ME do. And the older I get, the farther I am from 28, the younger and younger he will seem to me. My big brother, my "older man" crush, will never again be older than I am.
As with every year that passes I think of all of the things I would love to be able to share with him, namely my children. What joy it would bring him to see what a smart and talented girl Laine is becoming, and what a little goofball Lawton is. And I know they would have adored him as much as I did. It's a loss for all of us.
Yet another nearest and dearest, Erin, always astounds me with her eloquence and maturity and never more than when I find myself at a loss for words. I hope she won't mind me sharing what she wrote about Jaime this year...
"Two things Jaime wrote to me that I still hold onto:
1-That if I keep my heart as pure and full of love and life as the
summer we shared a stage together, than I will have succeeded. 2-Always
believe there is something of a wonder to the world and a magic which
makes it worth living in.
Nine years is a long time to be
without his magic but we've all tried to add some extra love and light
and art to this world in his absence. And he may be gone, but he owed me
a dinner and I still plan on collecting on that someday."
I'm planning on joining them. Still miss you, Jaime.