I find that I’m having trouble sleepig or concentrating and the reason has to be that I haven’t been writing anything beyond lyrics and some poems. It’s very difficult for me to want to write; I feel like the last thing I devoted my writing to along with my heart blew up in my face. I spent so much time studying the foster care system and Mike’s case in particular. I can tell you how long he was at residences, what drugs they had him on, the abuses he had suffered. As I learned them they burned themselves into my brain. The shock was hard to absorb.
It took me a year to get comfortable with the subject matter enough to go and start raising awareness and money to make a documentary and book about the experience. Then when he died in June of 2016, it took my legs right out from under me and sent me swirling into a tirade of profanity at the sky. Michael was only 19 and didn’t hook up with Rachel and Tyson, his parents, until he was sixteen and I feel like that three years of love is not nearly enough for what he endured in this world.
It leaves me in a quandry as to what to do with myself. I can’t seem to digest this loss. I’ve worked through it in therapy and talk openly with his mom when we need to, but I have this bereft feeling nothing takes away. Having lost both of my parents was hell but to lose a child I love is the worst feeling I ever had. And it didn’t make any cosmic sense. I got the money, I made the project; it was all meant to be except nobody was supposed to suddenly die. Especially the flamboyant beating heart of Kindred.
Without the business acumen or ability to edit solo, I’m rather stuck. Rachel saw to so much of the details and she now is nursing her new son into her home environment. She and her mate planned never to adopt again but life had other plans and they are now the proud parents of a 17 year old boy. They tell him all about Mike and he is very much a part of the family and is called the big brother. Rachel, for what she does for others, is truly one of my heroes.
As far as the project, I blame myself for us not having been further along when Mike passed. That I didn’t have a rough draft to show him before he died and my guilt is immense. I know that several things went sideways getting the post production solidified. Rachel had huge assignments at her full time job running a food bank and I was in and out of the hospital. We figured we can always finish it in time for next years festival circuit. It’s true, nothing fucks you harder than time.
So now I’ve been in a depressed state for months. There are several reasons but number one is my status in this project I took money for and made promises on. If only I could count on my my teenager who is a producer already to help but he’s got two jobs over summer then a full senior year course load, so I will learn how to edit. I said I would before but I was intimidated. It would be so much easier to have someone else help but if there is one moral in this story is there is no easy way out. You have to learn and do and feel for yourself. You have to fight through the pain. I have to believe that one day my heart will begin to heal and the memories of Mike and his inspiration for Kindred and my involvement with helping kids will bring tears of joy.
Until then I have to be brave and get my ass back into my work. It’s been long enough. Warriors don’t leave things like this undone and if Mike saw me as anything, I was a warrior for good. So that’s who I need to be now. And remember why I did all this in the first place; because almost half a million kids are languishing in hellish limbo and they need everyone they have to sound the alarm.