I loved watching him hum a new melody, or try to play the chords on his keyboard. I loved the excitement and light in his eyes when he would show me new lyrics or when a song would start to come together. I was SO proud, in awe really. But I usually felt that way any time I was around him. I remember being in Jon's parents house and he would show me songs on the keyboard in his room, or even the piano downstairs. Didn't matter if it was 3am, if he was feeling musical, he was going to express it. Sometimes we'd be in the middle of a conversation and he would stop and say, I have to remember this melody. I vividly remember him coming over to my apartment in Forest Hills (before we moved into the city) after his band had finished one of their (now) major songs, and I wanted it to be about me so badly. Half-jokingly I said, "When are you going to write one about me?"
And then he did.
I had mentioned in a previous post that Jon often sang to me when I was upset, or worried, and that I had sung to him while he was dying. Jon never got to perform the song he wrote for me. It kind of sat in his notebook for awhile, as there were several songs that were written around the same time that the band was focusing on. But Jon sang it to me countless times. Those private serenades are something I will always remember. Closing my eyes and hearing his voice in my head still calms me down. Just after Jon died, his best friend Dan sent me the only recording they had of Jon singing my song -- he was teaching it to the band. Although it is hard for me to listen to, I am thankful that I have it.
This Friday night, the band is performing in tribute to Jon. It will be the first time "my song" is performed, and my heart hurts knowing that Jon will not be up on that stage singing it. He wanted to so badly, and I prayed he would get to at least once before we lost him. Watching him on stage made my face hurt from smiling. It made me feel warm all over and truly, truly proud. How could one human being be so incredible? And how could he pick me?
The more I listen to the song he wrote for me, the more haunting it becomes. The line that always gives me chills is, "I'd leave this world so happy if I had this girl" and "When I leave this world, I need this girl." Before he died, I made sure he knew he had me and it was okay to leave this world, although inside I was begging for him not to.
But today when I woke up, a different part of the song was in my head. I never really focused on the beginning of the song before, but this line: "Better to see it coming/ than not see you at all", keeps repeating in my mind. Jon was sick when I met him. As much as I didn't want to, I could see the possibility of this heartache from the beginning. It was always a threat. I have never liked the saying "Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all." But this seems to fit. Better to see it coming, and face it, together with an amazing love, than to not feel this pain and have never seen Jon.
Aside from Jon being healthy, there is nothing that I would change. Even knowing what I know now, and feeling the heartache I feel at this very moment, (and it seems every moment in the last 17 days) I wouldn't have run away. I wouldn't have held back. I loved that man completely, with every part of me, and he loved me just as much. Somehow he was wise beyond his years. Somehow, the song he wrote, wasn't just about me, it was for me. He's still finding ways to be with me.
It feels like I'm re-learning life. I started therapy recently, and while talking about my feelings, I guess I have a tendency to not finish my sentences. The therapist had to keep asking me to complete my thought. The thing is, Jon was who I told my feelings to. And with him, I never had to finish my sentences. He knew what I was trying to say. Come to think of it, he and I sort of had our own language in a sense. I'm not saying we could read each other's minds, but in a way, we really could. He completed me. Life was easier with my best friend. I miss him constantly.
I used to have these nightmares when Jon was really sick. In the dream, I'd be trying to get in touch with him, but either my phone wouldn't work, or the text wouldn't send, or some other nonsense. And I'd wake up with this sense of panic, only to realize he was right next to me. It's much harder to wake up and realize I truly can't get in touch with him. At least not in the way I'd like to. I feel him around me, but it is hard to have faith in such silence.
In the first few weeks we were together, Jon told me he constantly had nightmares of something trying to kill him. (Makes sense, I guess). So one day, I went to an antique store while he was getting voice lessons and bought him a dream catcher for $1 for his bedroom at home. His nightmares lessened, and finally stopped. He attributed that to me being next to him, but I took a chance and after the funeral, took the dreamcatcher home to my bedroom in the apartment. I'm hoping there's some magic left in it.
I don't know what the future holds. I do know that I am forever-changed in more ways than one. And somehow I think it's a good thing. I've found strength I didn't know I had. I will never take things for granted. Maybe this is all part of some cosmic plan for me... But I'd give it all up to have him back. I am realizing now, he will always belong to me. Just in a different space and time.
love is a deeper season than reason, my sweet one. -- e.e. cummings