John Brinkman , I love you. One day I will find the words to adequately express just how much you mean to me. I keep writing throughout the day and erasing because words aren't enough. You are really gone. I'm devastated and completely undone, but your love holds me even still.
In our final days together we didn't share many words because we didn't need to. I held your feet till you fell asleep. We held the space for each other to be without answers. When you woke up, you reached your hands for mine and your entire being said I love you. When it came time to leave, you only said "Thank you. You are beyond love." When I tried to respond, you reminded me, "you've already given me everything." Being present with you each day, on your 54th Birthday and on Thanksgiving was the biggest gift I have ever received. There was no time grieve, no time to remember, no time to worry, no time for regrets, only the present moment. Now there's too much time to grieve, but when I close my eyes I hear your laugh, I see the eternal spark in your eyes, I feel your presence still with me. mermaid wedding dresses 2018
John , you were my second father. You walked through every part of my life with me, even the insignificant parts, you were there all the same. My first tutu, my first musical theater number to West Side Story (and then your son, Manuel went off to be in it on Broadway with your coaching!) my first improv class with Phyllis Lamhut and Murray Luis was because of you. You sent me off to Israel, you helped me produce my first show. We bought a cow for orphans in Kerala with tickets from the show. You have clothed me in wedding dresses, plastic bags, table cloth gowns, and saris. You made magic out of cloth and thread for me, Rosie Herrera and countless others. You leaped across the stage as Oberon during my first solo as Madame Butterfly. You coached me in every audition, recommended I perform at IBC. When I was on the outs with ballet, you googled "barefoot dancing in the mountains" sent me off to Utah on scholarship with RirieWoodbury. When I had reverse culture shock coming back from Israel, you helped me create and costume my second show. When I perform the latest version in Dallas this January, it will be for you.
We spent three glorious summers together at ADF with my sister ShaLeigh . Hours upon hours upon hours of conversations on the front porch morning, noon, night, and early morning late night post-performance chats. You taught me that everyone needs an anthem. You have given me so many throughout the years. We have a playlist I have on repeat. We ate nearly every meal together- you were a masterful cook. Deer would watch us outside the kitchen window. We drove to work together. Danced together. Ballet, salsa, rumba, waltz, swing, you did it all. We even learned Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse "Dancing in the Dark." I loved watching you and Mason Martinez dance together and seeing the bond you shared. You have raised us as your own.
You are the reason, I am making a home for art and building the portable stage. It is your design. You sat me down and taught me how and consulted me on the ins and outs. You provided the wood, the foam, the covers. We will perform on it dancing with you while you dance with angels.
Questions about insurance, consulting, car accidents, tickets, love and heartache, dossiers, how to stand up for myself after being assaulted, how to find compassion and look at the bigger picture, lighting, production details, everything, you always knew. You always listened. You always gave freely with so much clarity.
When my mom had cancer, you sat me down and walked me through what was going to happen and how I need to help. This past week, my mom went with me to be with you. The person who would help me get through this immense loss, was you.
I will never forget you. I am who I am because of you. You are always a part of me and will live on as I teach, dance, and live day by day, moment by moment with your memory.
John Brinkman , you are beyond love and you have given me everything. Grieving might not end, but neither does love. I love you, John Brinkman. Rest in peace. <3