Taken from my blog post. I thought it might fit well here, too.
I'll just be honest with you, folks. It's been a miserable week plus for me. And if I can't be real with you all, then I can't ever be. And hasn't Adamark's passing made us all feel a bit more “real?” My first instinct is to want to call his mother and father, or send them each a card. I want to go visit his memorial and pay my respects. I want to erase some months and go back to the day or days after his passing and be at a memorial service. But the reality is, ironically, he was someone we knew online, and though others had more offline relationships with him, the main avenue of interaction with him was always online, so we had no idea he was gone, until he simply wasn't there for too long. In real life, we would have known he'd had to go to the hospital again. And I can't help but think I've somehow let Mark down. We would have sent flowers, we would have gone to visit. We would have been there.
I realize now I'm holding myself to a certain behavior and standard that Mark wouldn't have asked for or expected. It doesn't diminish the greater sense of loss and struggling to cope that most of us feel online when losing someone who is dear to us. Our memorial to him is happening on March 6 at 1 p.m. SLT, and hopefully then we can start to have a little bit of closure and feel as if we've properly honored his memory. I know that, if I could rewind the time, I would have honored him more when he was still living. I would have made our times more intentional, would have wanted to know just what he thought about so many things.
So I turn my attention back to the men and women I spend my time with now, realizing that, at some point, they're all going to be gone too. Me too. And I resolve to make my time, every time, more intentional.
Also this week, we've just had some really disappointing issues and miscommunications with a few sim building, arranging sort of things. There are probably a few people who are going to kick me for openly mentioning it here, but I'll save the details since no one needs to know. Yes, we've eventually worked them out, but it's been like playing last-minute total rearranging of a lot of different things due to major real life issues, then interpersonal issues, then stylistic difference issues, then... you get the picture.
And then in real life... well, where do I start? My personal family has been great, but my son has issues at school. There's a really awful situation involving a coworker that I can't do anything about – or say anything about, according to “the management,” and I understand them, completely. And, has anyone but me noticed that – hello? The world is on fire? As we just go by our daily lives here in America, some of you are seeing riots and uprisings and complete societal collapse and change in neighboring countries if not right there in your back yard.
I get a lot of flak sometimes from folks who say I'm abnormally positive all the time, and they don't see me dealing with any negativity in a real way – well, here you go folks. It happens to me, too.
The difference is, I choose not to stay there. If I'm going to be intentional about my times, as in memory of Mark, and as in my new resolution not to let a single encounter go by the side without filling it with my whole self and engaging as if it were my last day, or if it were your last day, I don't have the time to stay wrapped up in the negativity. My spirit may still be mourning, but it can't last. My disappointments may be real, but they can't define me. I may feel the reality of uncertainty all around me, but fear can't rule my decisions or cloud my vision of the future.
What does this post have to do with Ar? I don't know. But I'm feeling it from you, too, at least some of those close to me. I can't be the only one who can feel it.
Someone mentioned to me that they feel completely at a loss with how to help the folks who knew Adamark. They don't know what to do. They don't know what to say.
I guess I'm telling you to do what I'm going to do, too. I'm going to be here. Remain. Be strong, and fully love and enjoy the folks that have been dropped in my personal path. It is easy to be part of a community and hop into the fun when there's no sadness or pain or personal sacrifice. Why do it in SL at all anyway? Isn't life full of that? Why would I want to experience this stuff in SL?
Because the people in SL are real, even though their avatars aren't. Because relationships between souls and hearts and minds are real, even though the tangible isn't. Ask anyone who knew Adamark who is feeling the loss now – yes of course, it's real. Because what you do in the smallest, most insignificant moments to the people who can just as easily disregard or turn off (turning off SL, making a new avatar, etc.) are, after all, important.
"Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart." - Marcus Aurelius
With all my heart. That sounds like the best way to approach the coming days, and I hope that's how you'll see me.
Esse quam videri - To be rather than appear to be.