Monday, December 05, 2011

Thank you Dragonlady

Anne McCaffrey, the Masterharper and Dragonlady has left us.
"It's not what you take when you leave this world behind you... it's what you leave behind you when you go." ~Randy Travis
She left us her thoughts, that we might sift through them, letting some settle into our hearts... and a safe haven that you didn't have to run away from home to seek shelter in.  She left us stone markers that started you on a journey, a journey that if you were anything like me you couldn't help but follow...

The path twisted and turned, leading down through the underbrush, past brigands and into the solid clasp of close friends... The journey turned from one of hours and days into a lifetime that spanned generations. 

She had an incredible ability to take you with her, to another world, another place, another lifetime.  You thought you were escaping from everyday life... to follow along safely in the shadows. You thought you were watching an everyday average hero in the making. Well you were.

But little did you realize, you were actually learning how to be one.

The day that journey ended, was the day you realized that the elusive hero you'd been chasing, desperately hoping to catch... the one that was always just out of reach, was the person looking back at you with that same goofy grin you'd seen a thousand times. That grin you get, when it dawns on you that something has been in front of you all along...

Along the way I learned that bad things happen... but what matters, is what you do after the bad things and how you treat the people around you that counts. I learned that heros and legends aren't born, they are made by their choices. The irony of it all though, is that even by not choosing... you've made your decision.

I know that I may never be in a situation where I have to make the right choice (as decided in the comfort of a livingroom by someone with the time and perspective to analyze it as such). But I would like to think that while I wept for their losses, laughed at their antics and chuckled with vindictive glee during their ingenious and well deserved triumphs *smiles*... that ultimately I learned something from the hardest of lessons alongside those characters I aspired to be.

I hope that if I ever find myself there, at one of those crossroads of a lifetime captured in a moment, that I would be able to make a choice worthy of even a sidenote in one of her novels.

The wonderful difference between life and a good story, is that you don't need a near death experience to see those special moments again.  They are there waiting for you, like a good friend. Ready, no matter the time that has passed, to be dusted off and embraced again. They don't question you during the lowest moments of your life, when all you want to do is run away. Even if the furthest you ever run is across the road to your best friend's parents' house.

I'd like to say thank you Anne McCaffrey, for sharing your friendship and your ideas. Sending them out where the *whole* world could see them, that someone like myself might chance upon them and find something as precious amongst those pages as the warmth of a campfire on a winters night.

Thank you for giving me things to think about that were so much more inspiring than Hollywood makeup, hairdos and the latest breakups.  Thank you for helping me decide who I wanted to be on the inside, and why that was more important than what I looked like... especially during my gawkward discomboobulated stage that still rears it's vile armored head from time to time.

But above all, thank you for running away with me and bringing me back when it was time, with a little more understanding than when I left. You were a very special lady, and I'm honored to have read your thoughts ;)