Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Day After

Well, yesterday was simply one of the saddest days I've had in years. Was it because it would have been Grace's sixteenth birthday, that milestone in every kid's life? Was it because I had to spend the day alone here in NYC to teach? Oh, it's pointless I suppose to try to understand why some days just slay you. This one did.

Then the oddest thing happened. Those of you who read this blog regularly might remember that just last week I thought about contacting someone who has been out of my life for some time. I didn't do it. Last night, feeling so melancholy, I walked back from The New School after class, lost in my thoughts. It was in so many ways a perfect fall evening: chilly and clear and all good NYC things. But sad me just wanted to crawl into bed with a glass of single malt and a good book, go to sleep and wake up to the day after. I turned onto Bethune Street, and was right in front of my building when seemingly out of nowhere that very person appeared. I was so startled that I called his name, and he was so startled to see me there.

We stood beneath the lamplight talking for quite some time. Laughing. Catching up. In many ways it was as if no time had passed. He remembered that it was Grace's birthday, and that remembering and acknowledging it reminded me why I had loved this guy so much in the first place.

So much is lost in life. People we love. Friendships gone awry. Misunderstandings and mistakes. Somehow seeing him this way was just what I needed. We hugged goodbye, a good hard hug. Part of me wanted to stand on that street all night. Part of me wanted to make a plan to see each other again. What can be repaired? What can be regained? I really feel that this serendipitous meeting was some kind of divine intervention.

I came inside and got in bed. And it was after midnight. The day after had arrived, and I was grateful.