This morning I went to the funeral of one of my classmates. It was incredibly sad. We’re 26. We are not old enough to die.
He was a great guy. I remember him playing the clarinet in my music class. I took music in years 11 and 12 so I could pick a different instrument to study each semester and would never have to learn anything higher than 1st grade. My semester of “voice” yielded the worst results. Probably because I decided singing the Sydney Olympic opening ceremony song by Nikki Webster would be significantly enhanced with sign language and interpretive dance. At the time I was miffed that I didn’t make it into the school choir so I gave up trying to sing properly. I’m defeated very easily.
It was reflected in my final marks.
And in my life generally.
But Jerome was a proficient clarinettist, (no interpretive dance needed to spice up his performances!). He had these backing tapes that he’d play along to, which they played at the funeral today and it took me back to sitting on the floor of the newly built music centre watching other students play. That room did need more chairs.
It’s odd. Just this weekend I was forcing my boyfriend to watch old family tapes of me (I’m great at entertaining!), and I was trying to find one of my recital pieces to prove that I can mash keys on a piano with some accord, when I came across a video of some people in my year doing their recitals and Jerome was there playing the saxophone.
Then the very next day I find out he’s passed away.
It’s funny how life sometimes gives you hints, and when you look back on things it’s kind of like “oh that makes sense”. Like dreaming about the world ending, and then the world ends.
In his last year he wrote a blog. He was so thoughtful and intelligent and it really shows in his writing. He was passionate about life. He shouldn’t have got cancer. Life is incredibly unfair. http://lifestyleovercancer.com/
I recommend reading it. A man coming to terms with his mortality in his mid twenties - what a terrifying thing to have to do! His words are heartfelt and inspiring.
Mine are spasmodic and lack direction. Or have too many directions. I can’t tell. They kinda just do what they want. Pfft, words.