*This was meant for Facebook, hence my discussing the hiatus later in the post*
So you probably know how infernal 2013 was for me, but relief came in February in KC. Even more adventures began in June when I moved to Michigan for my new job and new chapter of my journey. During this “honeymoon” phase I thought I had conquered anything life could possibly throw at me. Anything was possible. My psyche could never be broken. EVER. Try to break me. Just fucking try.
Well, one call I received in mid-August and another earlier this month showed that my hubris was once again on display.
Those calls, as you may have inferred by now, informed me of the diagnosis and death, respectively, of one of my best friends.
He had his flaws, we had some disagreements. But his involvement in my life–from teaching me to read at age 3, drilling me with math flash cards at age 4, getting me into baseball and eventually being head coach of our team for 3 years, to encouraging me to get out of Cahokia to better myself at age 15, to his steadily consistent love for me and respect for others that he deemed worthy of receiving—is a gift arguably worth as much as the gift of the life he helped give me. Especially when you consider where I am from and how few fathers are around in those homes. I thought he would live long past 60. I thought his desire to take care of himself more would offset my mom’s death at age 57 by more than 3 years. And I never thought I’d share something like this on Facebook—I kept my mother’s death in September 2011 off what some perceive as a deep blue sea of negativity. And I didn’t wanna be a complete attention/sympathy whore.
But there’s a difference. This isn’t Facebook drama. It’s real life. And I’m going on FB hiatus for 30 days, starting at 1:00 Eastern on Sunday, so I can do what he’d want me to do—live my life. Watching football exactly 27 days after I got that call will probably help me remember that I am 27 years old. I in theory have a long life to live, but being at the near midway point—assuming I do not live longer than my parents—scares the fuck out of me.
Emotionally, I am alright. Don’t worry. I still have bursts of anger or sadness that come at random, but I am handling this tragedy much better than the one from 3 years ago.
New hobbies have been part of that, and darts helped me get my mind off his cancer and death more than anything. Except for when I hit the triple-20 spot in honor of him, I guess.
The last time I quit FB was in January of 2013, for 30 days. During that time, I lost 13 pounds, quit drinking, noticed a reduced need for prescribed medication, slept better, truly got my ass in gear regarding my job search after a couple weeks of feeling sorry for myself, and to say it simply—I found better crap to do. Even if I was browsing Reddit, it was still at LEAST marginally better than wasting time on Facebook. No, really.
I also found obsolete ways of contacting people. Anyone remember texting? Actually hearing a voice on the damn phone? I think that had a significant effect in curtailing negative states of mind, also.
So my absence does not mean I won’t be completely out of touch with the world. I have email (firstname.lastname@example.org), Skype (tavares.allen.17), this blog, hell my YouTube channel isn’t extinct yet, go there if you want. I do need to make another video though.
If you want to be really brave, you can text or (gasp) call me. My number has changed as of April though, so message me before I deactivate on Sunday if you want it.
I’m out. Have fun dressing up like sluts without judgment, girls, and embarrass yourself even more than usual, gents. She doesn’t even know what you look like with that Ebola mask on. Go for it. Your costume is totally original, bro.
Rest in peace, dad. I’d like to think you’re reading this laughing and wondering why I never showed you my YouTube channel. That’s a good question, actually.