September 2nd, 2005

Long road home

no subject

Forgive me for not waxing as poetically as I sometimes do. This has been an unusual week, which is the understatement of the millennium.

Night before last I received news that one of my boyfriend's good friends killed himself. I'd met Dave when I was down in Ft. Myers last month -- uh, actually July, this is September now, isn't it? -- and I thought he was a pretty nice guy with a colorful personality. He happened to be with us when we hung out in Sarasota at the Speakeasy, when Julia and Ric played at open-mic night. We all sat at one table together and listened to some of the best singing and guitar playing as I've heard in a while at the local level, and ate gator tail. After a while a handful of us walked up the street a ways to the beach, to catch the sun setting on the Gulf of Mexico. It was me, Glenn, Mark, and Dave. It was positively blissful; I was swept away with love for my man, I felt like he and I were the sun and the moon standing on that beach at that moment, and Mark and Dave were our worthy subjects, satellites revolving around our gravitational pull.

Now, Dave is gone, and I find that very hard to accept. Considering I know so very little about him, and spent even less time in his presence, he certainly made an impression on me, a positive one. But then, my man's friends are *ALL* good people, so that's no surprise. If this news were, God forbid, about any one of them, my grief would be no less. We should have lost NO ONE this week -- not one, not Dave, not any one of them.

Dave, if you're out there, you might be reading this. We miss you terribly, but I think we all understand why you did it. This is a crazy, hateful world we live in, and we all struggle with our personal demons. I wonder sometimes how I conquer my own struggle. So, keep an eye on us, wouldja? We'll never forget you; the time was way, way, way too short ... but far from meaningless. I for one am glad I had the chance to meet you; I just never imagined I wouldn't be hanging out, eating gator tail in Sarasota, with you and the rest of the gang again.

Feel free to come back and join us, if you figure out a way to do that. ;) :P

That is bad news to receive about anyone, at any time ... but working in the news business THIS week, with the constant pummelling of images from the Katrina-battered Gulf coast makes it too much to bear. But there's a half-hour to fill, so if losing a cherished friend, and thousands of lives elsewhere because of a hurricane isn't enough for ya, how's about the local stories of death and destruction???

The irony is, the weather up here couldn't BE more perfect and beautiful. It's a harsh contrast, and difficult to enjoy.

Yes, I've officially had my fill of death and destruction these past 10 months, thank you very much. The tsunami disaster last December, the London bombings a couple months ago, not to mention the regional and national stories of death of innocence, week in and week out -- I'm talking about the stories of children abducted, abused, beaten to death, used for pornography ... and now this. I usually pride myself on having the fortitude to do my job and do it well, without losing my sensitivity toward such stories. But this week has been a real test, and not a test I wish to go through again any time soon.

I wish I had the strength and daring to up and leave my comfortable life here in Grand Rapids to go pitch in with the recovery effort down south. I am totally and utterly humbled by the pictures I've seen of allllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll the people who lost EVERYTHING thanks to Katrina.

And frustrated by the fact that there is so much suffering, right here in the wealthiest nation in the world, and we can't even seem to help our own. I know people are working hard to right the situation down there; I know there's a lot of sacrifices being made north to south, coast to coast, but it just seems like in the United States of America, with our wholesome, God-fearing values, the suffering shouldn't have even gone on ONE day, let alone a week. What is wrong with us?

Or is this just another lesson in limitations?

Who knows.

I sincerely hope the news in this journal improves drastically before the end of the month!
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    don't hear much of anything in the void left behind