Do you remember this photo I took of your water bottle and glasses? I think it was the first photo I took that was in some way of you. It was on our 2nd coffee meeting, almost two years ago. I was entering what has proven to be the most tumultous time of my life, one of explosive growth, extreme pain and pure joy. Somehow, the Universe connected us, and you were an integral part of that beautiful mess that I call my life.
I can't express in words what you mean to me. You are not only friend, but brother, and a fotohermano at that. Your friendship has been liberatory and life-giving on so many levels. All those hours of conversation with you where I knew I could unpack the pain of my experiences of racism and patriarchy and brokenheartedness, knowing you would provide a safe space for my anger, as well as the love and solidarity I needed to move towards healing--those times are priceless and have changed my life. You were one of the key people who kept being the mirror I needed to see myself as I am, flaws and beauty and fierceness and all.
When you told me some months ago that you and Jenny were moving to Guatemala, I didn't let on what a blow it was to me. I had known this was coming, but I didn't know it would be so soon. Since then, I've pretty much been in denial, but the last week or so, the realization has been sinking in, and I've found myself with tears I can no longer force back in random places, like on the red line or coffeeshops or putting Cadence to sleep or when the night is quiet and I'm all alone.
I suck at goodbyes, and I feel like I'm really sucking at writing this...I guess what I want you to know beyond a shadow of a doubt is the light that you have been in my life. Cadence and I love you and Jenny dearly, and the two of you have given me hope for love, not in the cheesy hollywood way but in the raw honest bell hooks way. And I know, too, that this is NOT goodbye, cuz let's face it, we had some really good conversations on gchat. Maybel I'll even learn how to Skype. And tweet more. Maybe.
So thank you, mi querido amigo y hermano y compañero. See you in Xela soon.
In love and struggle always,