I Have My Answer
I want answers. I want to know how things happen. I want to know purpose, reason, function. I want to know why. Give me explanations and explanations that satisfy me beyond instant gratification. Tell me something that will leave my constantly racing mind settled at 2:00 in the morning; tell me something that makes sense.
Don’t tell me that Avery died and that you don’t have an answer as to why. Don’t tell me no one will ever understand and then contradict yourself and say that one day it may make sense. I want answers, and I want them now.
At least, that is what I thought at 2:00am on February 13, 2014 when text messages and tweets notified me that at 17 years old, one of my closest friends, had lost his two-year battle to T-Cell Leukemia. Aggressive, relentless cancer ended Avery’s existence. Months later I now know, that cancer only restricted his existence and not his life.
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I say existence as opposed to life because there is a clear difference, one that I had heard of but never considered prior to Avery’s passing. My idea of living had been so confined to society’s blueprint that we strive to do well in one stage of our life simply to do a little better in the next stage. I realized that we are so caught up in just getting through the stages in the way we think we are supposed to, that we never actually live. We are just existing and subconsciously proving this through the tangibles- test scores, money, job titles.
Furthermore, we are just existing with hopes of reaching this culminating point in our lives that we believe will give us a clear understanding as to why we have worked so hard or invested so much time into certain commitments. There is no equation or set of directions to reaching this point though. So I came to the conclusion that it is okay to be happy. It is okay to be proud and satisfied with my life as it is at any given moment, and it does not mean that I am complacent. There is nothing to expect, nothing to wait for, no single moment in life that will define my purpose. I will not restrict myself to the mold that insists that I attend a prestigious university, pursue a lucrative career, and raise a family only to say that I have lived. Life- it is not to be reflected upon, but instead it is ongoing; it is active; I am living.
There is no destination, only an endless journey, one that Avery has proven to me is real. Avery taught me that I can continue to live after I cease to exist physically through the relationships I form and the love and passion I share with others. My memories of Avery are daily reminders that I have nothing to worry about. I have no mold to conform to, no destination to reach. I am sufficient. I am worthy. When I cease to exist, I will not cease to live.
I dare to say I have my answer.