Monday, March 26, 2007

Pain, Death, TSB, and Ladama

I’ve tried to sit down a few times this week to write an entry for this blog. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to type more than two sentences. This week, I’ve been in pain. A pain that doesn’t produce tears, moans, and cries. Instead, it’s a pain that leaves one silent, wishing and hoping for a chance to articulate and release the pain that lives inside.

I think that I’m finally at a place that I can write about what has happened. At least, I’m giving it another try.

This week, I was informed that my best friend from high school passed away earlier in the week. Her name is Ladama Hunter. She was my roommate three years of the three and a half years I lived at the Texas School for the Blind.

Interestingly, I made mention of this young woman in one of my blog entries a couple of weeks ago. “Moonlight Madness” In that entry, I talked about my roommate, Ladama, who had no problem with sleeping. I went on to say that I would give the sleeping respect and not disturb her rest. Now, my friend is truly sleep. And now, just like then, I give her respect to rest in peace. Ladama was truly a special person to me.

Many of the people that met me in my post TSB life really don’t know much about that time in my life. It’s not a part of my life that I really like to talk about that much. The time I spent at TSB was full of pain and sorrow. I really hated TSB. And my feelings about TSB haven’t changed. Even though I’m grown, mature, and wiser, I still hate TSB.

And why did I hate TSB. Well, because TSB was the place that I was losing my sight. TSB was the place I lived, instead of living with my family. TSB was the place that I learned about and experienced racism. TSB was the place that I was sent to learn, rather than my home school district who should have taken responsibility for my education. TSB was a place that supposedly shielded us from the real world, while at the same time preparing us for the real world.

With that being said, let me also point out that all of my time at TSB was not bad. (I know that sounds hard to believe after the above rant. LOL) I had some great teachers, who really-really cared about their students. Those teachers, even the couple I didn’t really care too much for, made sure that I achieved all that I could. Of course, there were a few teachers/counselors that didn’t believe in me. But that’s cool. I didn’t feed off of their energy anyway. I attached myself to the folks that wanted to see me achieve.

When I was not hurting and wishing that I could just be dead instead of live out each dreadful day, I was kicking it with my roommate, Ladama. When I look back over my happy memories at TSB, Ladama is probably in 90% of them. She really did make life easier to live. If it wasn’t for Ladama, I probably wouldn’t have made it during that very sad part of my life.

I will always remember and appreciate Ladama for what she gave me. Laughter, hope, energy, determination, assertiveness, fun, friendship, sisterhood, companionship, and love… She was my best friend, and I’m comfortable saying that I was hers. We were like sisters.

Wednesday, I will attend her funeral in Tyler, Texas. News of her death is still a little surreal for me. I’m sure that the reality of what is already final will strike me deep Wednesday morning. I’m certain it will.

I’ll update my blog after I return back to Houston from the funeral. Until then, love God. He loves you.

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