I have issues, y’all. I mean, a LOT of issues.
I likely will never have a summer body. During any season. I’m great at introductions, but suck at follow up, which means I’ve likely met tons of people along the way that brought opportunity with them but I was too dumb to open the door. I hate deadlines. Loathe them to the point of lethargy. The smaller the window to get something done the lazier I seem to get.
If saving a life depended on my making a phone call, honestly somebody might die that day. I’ve run from good relationships and stayed too long in bad friendships. I’m a bad decision maker. Sure I make decisions, but most could be considered questionable. I lend money to people who either have no intention or means to pay it back. The year 2015 is one big blur, only because I choose to forget the mind-boggling things I said Yes to.
I’m an overthinker. I set myself up to be let down due to the amount of time I put into wondering what could go wrong or right on a daily basis. I talk in my sleep, never saying anything of consequence. I’ll remember what you told me months ago but won’t recall what I did earlier that day.
I’m awkward, never having mastered the west coast handshake or the appropriate way or time to hug another human being. I close my eyes in photos, laugh during sad occasions, and cry during corny movies. Kissing is my foreplay, which means I’ve probably been rounding second base with every woman I’ve ever kissed while they were likely still putting on their cleats.
I spend most days trying to figure out how to be a better tribe member. A better big brother, cousin, uncle, and nephew.
I’m still not there.
However, I’m still luckier than most because, even with all of those issues — and there are plenty more — I’ve finally determined what my superpower is. My most important quality.
It’s… showing up.
Trying my best to be there. In the place. If your uncle says he’s getting married at the house, you go to the house. If your dad loves a basketball team, it’s finding a way to take him to see them lose so you can laugh at him. If any of your aces have an event, you make it to said event. If your cousin asks that you go to reading camp with her superstar daughter, you go. Immediately. If your siblings want a weekend meetup, you damn sure make your way there. If your aunt and cousins are only in town for one more day, you better be spending that day with them.
That’s basically what life is. Showing up. Making it “there,” wherever “there” is. It’s sharing the moments. It’s making it clear that they know how important they are to me. It’s finding my way there to let them know I care. It doesn’t mean I “have it like that,” because trust me, I don’t. At all.
But it’s important, so I try to find a way.
And it also doesn’t mean it will always work out. Sometimes you won’t be able to show up for your niece even though she said that’s all she wanted you to do for her birthday, or you won’t make your best friend’s book release, or your ace’s milestone birthday or film screening or the five year anniversary celebration of your favorite bar.
Sometimes situations and circumstances won’t allow things to synchronize in your favor. While I regret missing what I’ve missed, hopefully they know my heart was in the right place even though my body wasn’t.
With every superpower comes responsibility. Especially this one. A responsibility to make an effort. To give of yourself. To go. To be there. Showing up is now my life’s mission. My pledge to myself. My thing.
I have so, so many issues to work out. I know this. But I also know that as I do that, the art of showing up, being there, going, for those I care about is literally the least I can do.