I admit to being deeply affected by the death of Kyle Jean-Baptiste, the twenty-one year old young man who fell to his death this past weekend. When I looked at his picture, there was something so haunting behind his eyes… I cannot get it out of my head: http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/29/entertainment/les-miserables-kyle-jean-baptiste-dead-feat/. I am unsure whether it’s his age (the deaths of the young are always so heartrending), his contribution, journey and impending success or how he died; but whatever it is I am deeply captivated.
I get so angry… at whom? I am not sure – God, bad decisions, casual/absent parenting, the Universe, the fates, society – when those amongst us who have been cheated out of their right to a full, long life leave. It is so unnatural! I rail and grieve at the unfairness that extinguishes lights long before they are given the opportunity to realize just how brightly they could have shined.
I will not insult any of you by parroting the cliché – “life is short” – you’ve undoubtedly heard it now millions of times and as I have already stated in another post, my preference is a tad different – life can be short (there are many among us that live very lengthy lives). So, we will skip over that. But what I will say is this – yall can fuck around with any semblance of a bullshit existence you choose. I will be over here doing my best to squeeze and wring every single ounce of ooey-gooey-goodness out of this journey I can get! Truly. I do not need tragedies such as this to remind me how precious my life is, as similarly I do not need to lose something/someone to only then realize what they have been/are worth. But what these tragedies do do is hone my dedication to my avoidance of anything or anyone that may seek to devalue any minute of any of the minutes I may have left. Fuck that!
A talented, beautiful, poised-on-the-edges-of-success young man has lost this opportunity to continue on with us in this lifetime; may his soul rest in peace. And, I thank him for making history before he left; our community needs role models. Sadly, for a myriad of reasons too many of our young have left us – with broken hearts, restless souls, shattered faith and hope. Their deaths have touched us in places no one should access and have forever changed us. Many are left aimless, anger- and pain-filled. Hopeless. Questioning everything. Believing nothing. Floundering.
Listen, there is a lifeline; there are lifelines. Please trust me when I tell you that way beneath the grief, on the underside of anger and around the bend from pain, there is continued life. There can be hope. Solace lives there to. Need I remind you? “No one said it would be easy. They just said it would be worth it…” Let’s all just do the best we can with what we’ve been given. Yes, even the heartache. I speak from experience…