Kokomo

This one time recently I came downstairs and Trey had paused the TV show. He started it up, and the characters were talking about vacation and said, “Aruba, Jamaica . . . ”
The show went on with some other conversations, but I didn’t hear any of it because obviously I was now singing Oooh I wanna take ya to Bermuda Bahama Come on Pretty Mama
. . . And right there, on cue, two completely different characters on the show holding a completely different conversation said, “Key Largo, Montego” The timing was perfect and I was ecstatic. I clapped and laughed and was absolutely delighted by the whole thing.
Because I’m a huge dork.
Trey had seen this part of the show while I was upstairs, had known that I would sing, had known that I would be delighted and would applaud when the song was continued on the show so he rewound it and paused it and waited for me just so he could watch me be a dork.
Because he thought it was adorable.

Our Last Moment

I flick the bathroom light off, to avoid spotlighting your face as I open the door into our room. The dawn provides enough light for navigation, as well as enough for me to see you sleeping. Our son, who has stolen my place in our bed, snuggles under your arm. His tiny hand grasps your thumb. His puffy hair wilds against your arm. His tiny snores bitty echoes of your great roaring ones. Two matching faces, so similar especially in sleep. Everything is now. All of the light everywhere exists here, in the contented slumber of father and son. I stop to grasp the moment as I often do. I do not know this time it will be different. I know only it is a beautiful quiet moment in our loud turbulent lives and I stop to appreciate it before exiting the room and heading to work.

As far as last memories go, we could’ve done worse.

Eulogy

We held the memorial reception for Trey this weekend. I deliberated carefully on what I would say. I wound up unable to say anything at all.

Trey didn’t believe in obstacles. He believed in the power of every person to better themselves, to achieve success according to whatever standards by which they measure it. He believed everyone could be happy. Time after time, he would meet someone who was unsatisfied with their life and feeling unable to change their situation. Sometimes the person had made mistakes in the past, or survived a trauma, or was dealing with physical or emotional factors that they felt were trapping them. Trey’s response was always the same: “How are you going to use that to your advantage?”

He didn’t see flaws – he saw beauty. Every scar, every piece of baggage, every hidden pain – he saw them as signs of strength and sources of power. He believed in wabi-sabi, the perfection of imperfection.

Trey saw potential in everyone. Within ten minutes of meeting a person, he would have outlined a life plan for them. If you wanted to live outside of society and join the circus, he would give you the steps to own your own circus.

As people share their memories of Trey with me, themes repeat:

-Trey encouraged and coached me to achieve what I never thought I could.

-I felt judged/outcast by a lot of people, but Trey always accepted me.

-Trey made me laugh.

I believe he would be pleased with this legacy.

I never stopped seeing him as that fifteen year old boy with long bangs and purple shoes, acting tough. He was my universe.

So many people have offered support to me and to my family, for which I am humbled and grateful. This is harder than I could have imagined. We are taking it one day at a time, sometimes one minute, one breath.

Thank you to all for the support, well wishes and for the memories.