Tori Kelly - “Dear No One”
"I don’t really like big crowds
I tend to shut people out
I like my space, yeah
But I’d love to have a soul mate
God will give him to me someday
& I know it’ll be worth the wait”
today i lost someone i’ve loved and respected all my life. he was a father figure to me and one of my main supporters. it was all good just a week ago. my mom told me he was in the hospital and i asked about the details, but it seemed as though everything would be fine. they were visiting him everyday, laughing, chatting, etc. monday my mom hit me with a brick, and told me he was in icu…it was story that was dragging. she told me early that morning he had a heart attack and was in a coma. and this is when life got really real. i wasn’t expecting that. couldn’t really comprehend it either. throughout my life, i’ve had this bad habit of jumping to the worst possible scenario. i was scared, asked a bunch of questions my mom didn’t have the answers to. and i began to pray. harder than i have in long time.
he and his wife are like an aunt and uncle to me. i grew up next door to them, and can remember them being there for every step in my life. from small graduations to dance recitals to birthdays to even losing my dad. this morning i had a dream i flew home to be with the family. my mom drove me to their house and there he was, recovering but in good spirits. i hugged him as tight as i could and i think i cried because i was so happy he was with us. well i woke up and unfortunately that was just a dream. my mom text me saying she was praying and hadn’t spoken to his wife yet and that tomorrow was his birthday. well about an hour later i spoke to her. i knew what it was. i’ve had one of these calls before. “well, kam” it started. she told me he made a peaceful transition this morning and they sang him happy birthday. then the tears began to fall on both ends of the phone.
i say all of this to say that this very moment is hard for me. and every breath we take is way too precious. what’s killing me is every week about, my mom would tell me he asked about me. i never really called to say hi, but if i was visiting i wouldn’t leave town without stopping by. no matter how much i had changed, or the fact that my mom and i moved halfway across the country, he loved us just the same and always told me how proud he was of me.
as a child i’d go over to his house and hear him playing the trumpet. i was always so amazed that this thin man had so much power when it came to playing an instrument. i secretly think that’s why i claim to love jazz now. when i chose the image on the back of my business card for work, i chose an image of a man in new orleans playing the saxophone. i mailed them a thank you card with my business card in it. and my mom told me he said he knew the musician. too bad we never got to talk about it.
Janelle Monáe - Electric Lady [Official Video]
trying to convince at least one friend to go to toronto with me this weekend…wish me luck. lol.
I’ve not once wondered why I claim to not like strangers so much. It’s just become habit and I enjoy spending time with those I know. After explaining this to friend on Saturday night, following a rooftop party in Brooklyn I was so awkwardly standoffish at, I had an epiphany. It may have been fueled by two cups too much of tequila and orange juice, but it all made sense.
Before Hurricane Katrina I was the people’s champ. I was the “it” girl. Granted, I was only 16, but I was a popular girl – had loads of friends, envied by many, knew how to work a room (even if it was just a classroom or gym), and held many conversations with neighborhood regulars at the grocery store I worked at after school. It all came so easy.
After Hurricane Katrina, not only was there a shift in my atmosphere, there was a shift in my attitude. Those miles that separated me from those I loved the most, created the ultimate barrier that I would never let down even nearly ten years later. When I moved to Chicago, I probably didn’t mumble a word at school for at least a month. I was totally uninterested in anything anyone had to say, though I was the reason my mom and I made the trek to the Midwest. I was the new girl in the room and it was a feeling I never felt before. It wasn’t just about being new, it was about everything that came with it. I cringed at the thought of the countless self-introductions coupled with Hurricane Katrina horror stories those around me expected to hear. It made me anxious and uncomfortable and I can honestly say since then, in unknown spaces I’ve felt the very same way.
Each time I enter a new space, unknowingly, I revert back to that 16-year-old girl in a Chicago classroom sitting in the corner, fading to black. It only took me nine years and a couple makeshift tequila sunrises to figure this out.
Oh the relief.
No matter how awesome, good, caring, loving, etc. to a person you are, it sometimes just isn’t enough.
looking at really successful people your own age like “this could be me but i’m playin”