I will never forget where I was when I heard that the greatest entertainer ever had suddenly passed away. I was at the Excellence Playa Mujeres resort in Cancun, Mexico with my brand spanking new husband. We had just returned to our room from enjoying the morning in the ocean and pool when I said "welp, let me turn to the news. You know when you go on vacation, the whole world tends to fall apart without you knowing it". Little did I know a very big chunk of my childhood had crumbled. "Michael Jackson Dead at 50" was on the bottom of the cnn screen. "WTF? What do you mean Michael Jackson is dead?? This is a joke right? Where's the body? I want proof, hmph". I turned to other stations and heard about him falling into a coma, and prayed that that's what it really was. He was in a deep sleep, and there was major hope of him coming out. But as the minutes ticked by, every station kept saying those four letters everyone hates to hear - d e a d.
I cried. My husband didn't get it. He loved Michael Jackson too, and was sad, but not ready to shed tears. Well luv, maybe that's because your first concert wasn't Michael Jackson's when you were just 3 years old like mine was. Maybe you were glued to the tv when they showed the making of Thriller, absolutely petrified by that wolf thing he transformed into in the video, yet unable to turn away because you loved Michael so much. Maybe someone playing I Want to Rock With You didn't slap a giddy smile on your face like it did mine. And in later years, as the accusations rolled in, maybe your heart didn't cry for him and the peace he was never going to find.
As strange as it may sound, I never believed the accusations. I heard them, but I never really accepted them in my heart. Not because Michael was an icon, but because they never really seemed to fit. The parents of the kids always seemed really really really money hungry. Seriously, if someone were to molest my future child, I would want serious jail time and money for the counseling my child would have to get, not millions and millions and millions just because. After all, Michael was a big kid himself. I believe that as Michael got older, and further away from childhood, a part of him tried to hold on as best it could. So, he surrounded himself with children. They helped him to try to have that childhood he never had, as an adult. I desperately believe it was innocent. Michael was simply trying to savage a childhood that was taken from him before it even began. Don't get me wrong, sleeping in the bed with young children that were not his own was wrong in and of itself, but I in no way shape or form think that Michael's mind worked the way yours and mine does. I also believe that he was as stubborn as a mule and was determined to recreate his childhood whether or not it looked "right" to you and I. I don't know if the story of one of Michael's accusers coming forward and saying his allegations weren't true, that Michael never touched him, is a true story, but I hope it is. I would love for that piece of dirt to be wiped from Michael's name.
During the first week of his death, I cried for his soul. Did he know Jesus? Did he accept him? I pray. I prayed and prayed and prayed for God to have mercy on Michael's soul. Why be such an awesome humanitarian who suffered personally on Earth, only to suffer afterlife as well. What's the point? I wanted Michael to know that peace that it didn't seem like he ever got to know on Earth, in heaven. I rocked and cried and prayed, rocked and cried and prayed.
However today, today I cried for a whole 'nother reason. Michael Jackson, my Michael Jackson, the Michael of my childhood, is gone. He is truly gone. He will never again breathe the same air that I do. He won't get the chance to prove the media and the critics wrong. I'll never again get to see him perform Rock With You or Dirty Diana. We'll never see that smile again. He's gone.
Today I watched the memorial on cnn via facebook. I needed this tribute to realize this is for real, he's really gone. Like so many on facebook, I was waiting for someone to jump up and say this is a dream, or a really cruel joke, but it's not. As I watched it, I chuckled at myself remembering the time I tried to lean forward like he did in Smooth Criminal and almost broke my nose. If I couldn't do it, I knew it had to be a trick. "It's the shoes! The shoes I tell ya!" That's what I screamed at my mom. Last week she screamed it back at me as she saw on some news program that Michael owned the patent to those shoes with the springs in them. I also lifted an eyebrow remembering how when I got older, I wanted to be Dirty Diana because she was able to get so close to Michael, and he made a rockin song about her. Lucky chick.
All of those memories came flooding back as I watched cnn and I was just stuck. Maya Angelou's poem, the tears in Stevie Wonders voice, Al Sharpton setting them straight, John Mayer killing me softly with that guitar, and Usher breaking down all had me sniffling far more than I care to. However, Paris breaking down and talking about what a wonderful father he was did me in. This is real. This was someones father, brother, son, uncle, etc. It's very real, and very painful for the family I can imagine.
They did a great job. It was definitely a memorial fit for a king, and gave some of us a great sense of closure. I want nothing more right now than for Michael Jackson to be in heavenly peace.
Michael, we loved you, love you, and will always love you. You were the greatest entertainer that ever lived. Today you united all of us in the love we shared for you. Your greatness will never be matched. It's somberly funny that you were afraid that you would be forgotten. You will never be forgotten. You will live in our hearts forever, and we will show our children and our children's children who you were. No matter what, no one can take away your achievements, or the gifts that you gave to this world. Thank you for teaching us to look at the man/woman in the mirror, and to give give give. We love you Michael. May you rest in Heavenly peace.
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