I just got done celebrating my friend's 30th birthday. Nothing too crazy; it was pretty low key. He's been there for most of the past year and a half of graduate school. We've compared highs and lows-- relationship and/or family pitfalls, emotional highs and artistic lows. Instead of getting crazy wasted like we might have at 20, there was a reverence for the history we've each created in our own life and with each other. But also how he and I have shared the past year and a half.
He came to graduate school knowing there was a life-changing miracle growing within his wife and partner. Their son, Holden (what a cutie!), is about 7months old. I came to graduate school knowing my partner and love of my life was staying 1500 miles away. Within the first few weeks of school I think we understood our similar feelings of intrepidity were different than typical graduate students' plight, and there was an instant bond. Over the course of the first year grew a trust and understanding of the deepest parts of ourselves-- where our art comes from, our own personal history and the deeply profound effect that those things can have on each of us IF we choose to acknowledge it. Acknowledging those things to one another has been of the utmost importance to me and my artistic development. Thanks, Brandon!
There were moments where he was unsure of the birth of his child; knowing how drastically it would forever affect his friendships and career and yet being willing to own up to the incredible opportunity to witness and be a part of the positive change in the world. There were also moments where I was unsure of the love that awaited me 1500 miles away. I was tentative to trust with the baggage I had been carrying around. Compounded with the death of my father, this separation from my life partner seemed too much to bear at times. These friendships helped me understand, like Dr Seuss said, "Where ever you go, there you are.".
Over the course of the past 16 months my friends and I have developed an amazing trust and understanding of one another. I write this in celebration of that trust and friendship that we can all celebrate in each relationship in our lives. If we choose to listen and take the time for one another, no matter how busy the circumstance, it will behoove each and every one of us. Listen to the what your friends have to say (or even the silence that hangs in between), and we will knit tighter the connection between each and every one of us. Something I think our society as a whole desperately needs.
Thanks to all my friends, my family and my comrades. You have made me the person I am today. I hope we all continue to cherish the beauty in our lives, questions the curious and revel in the laughter.