Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but when I was in college Dave Matthews dropped by my apartment and used my bathroom. (I know, right?!?!?!)
To this day, that remains my most impressive (and singular) brush with fame – and he wasn’t even famous yet! Dave was just some guy with a band that we listened to at some bar on Thursday nights where the cover was cheap and the beer was cheaper. I hung on his every word then, and continued to do so for many years after our worlds expanded beyond the city limits of Charlottesville (Dave’s, perhaps, a bit more remarkably than my own).
His words were the soundtrack of formative life events, and one lyric in particular found me at a time when loss and uncertainty pervaded every inch of my existence:
"The space between
The tears we cry is the laughter keeps us coming back for more.”
I didn’t know it then, but the cracks evolving in my life’s foundation would – slowly, painfully, but unquestionably - yield space for new life. This is what I came to recognize and hold on to as my personal rendition of hope.
Two impossibly long years into Callen’s diagnosis, I look harder than ever for what is possible in even the tiniest of spaces. For the tuft of green grass or the stray flower bursting through the cracked sidewalk of our path forward. For that which enables us to keep coming back for more.
Enjoy the laughter.
Matthews, D and Ballard, G. (2001). The Space Between. [Recorded by Dave Matthews Band]. On Everyday [CD] New York, New York: RCA.
Armstrong, B. (1997). Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” [Recorded by Green Day]. On Nimrod [CD] Reprise Records.