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Friday, March 30, 2012

Miami After

Part of the title of this blog is "after 40" and to perhaps illuminate what happens in the life of one man in what we might called the "middle" of his life expectancy.  Granted I'm not shooting for 80, but considering gay middle age just 15 years ago was somewhere in your early 20's; I'm happy to have made it this far.  That being said, it's time  to pause and reflect about life, and sadly, death.

I have been meaning to write about this topic all month and try to write in my usual wry, sassy writing style.  How can you write about something that is as normal as going to bathroom (which is a place I might want to go, while I'm going).  At this stage in my life friends and family are passing and I know that I don't really want to be at the front or back of that parade. Today as my husband left for a funeral I asked "why are you going?"

He replied: "if I don't go to theirs, they won't go to mine." 

I want very much not to be schmaltzy and philosophical about death. It's a fact, we die. Yet our humanity desires immortality. How do I honor my Grandmother who showed strength through laughter and fearlessness. Or the handsome lawyer who was my team-mate who died alone yesterday after I told him he could always call if he needed to talk.  Or the 22 year old boy who swung from a tree in Morningside Park, who I learned this morning had committed suicide when I talked to his mom.

What is my responsibility after they're gone? I think this is point where at my age I look at my own mortality and accept and rejoice that I knew them or of them.  We are very small in the scheme of humanity, time and the universe. Our time here is a very small and very precious gift.  Sad to see such wonderful people go. I hope somehow I can learn from their lives and learn about humility, humor and grace: so I can pass it on through my own life.  Hopefully, those people who pass can live on through each one of us.