Born in ’86 I was that child in lycra shorts and neon with matching Saltwater sandals. I donned a “Nicki and Alex” style haircut and fashionably walked in kid hair shows. My first movie was "The Little Mermaid" for which I became utterly obsessed with singing and long flowing hair and of course Mermaids. Shortly after this whirlwind of a perfect childhood, my world changed, starting with reading “Dinosaur Divorce” in a stale office, a few miles from home. I kissed my garage door goodbye, literally, and my mom, my sister and I drove away to an apartment complex, where daddy wouldn't live.
As the first kid to have divorced parents in a close knit private Catholic school in the early 90s, I lost friends and stopped getting invited over for sleepovers. I lived in the dream world of movies and I remember the day my Father took me to see Aladdin. That Halloween I begged to be Jasmine even though my dad only wanted me to be a skeleton or witch or something bloody. Typical. Then came along “Mrs Doubtfire,” a movie that I took to heart all through my life.
Robin Williams, in character, fought for his kids. I couldn't believe my eyes. What do you mean he will do anything to see them? What do you mean he never gives up? My father loves me, yes he does, but as a kid I always felt like I was in the way. Every other weekend at Sears or playing video games or doing household chores. It wasn't not like "Mrs. Doubtfire" at all. He cancelled weekends for trips to Cabo and got married again in Vegas and didn't invite his kids. But Sally Field and those kids, they went through a divorce too, and they were all okay in the end. Even super hottie, Pierce Brosnan, couldn't stand in the way from a man and his kids.
It changed me. I saddened me. I wanted that so badly. A dad to fight for ME. Robin Williams became Peter Pan, too. He flew, he cooed and he believed in magic. He stood on a desk and told us to be ourselves, to be accepting. He entered the afterlife and explored grief, death and loss. He played deeply troubled characters and funny outlandish characters, sometimes infused into one. Robin Williams had the energy I held as a child, a spastic and silly energy that no one could ever turn off. I loved him and laughed at his movies and felt happy that there will "crazy" people out there like me to look up to.
The one time I met him, he was kind and smiled softly much like that of the Genie.
I have felt the darkness of manic depression. My whole life has been either the highest euphoria or the lowest sadness. I've done the work to be well, but at times that can get away from a person. I pray that his soul will be saved, despite the way he left the world. I pray that he knows, wherever he is, that millions loved and adored him and we wish him well.
Luckily for me my dad and I have become very close. It turns out that as adults we relate a lot more and continue to grow in our understanding of each other. I don't know what I would do without my father, despite the fact he didn't raise me or become a woman in disguise. He's more than made up for all of that now as a mentor, listener, supporter and best bud. Love ya dad and miss ya, Robin.