Yesterday I spoke on behalf of a great friend and family member. My cousin Curtis Bonds Norman. All day and during the service there was a calm over me. Even as I watched other family members cry and go through there emotions, I was good. Way stronger than I’d thought I’d be based off of how I was when I got the news.
I had flirted with the idea of speaking at the service because it was my first time being a Honorary Pallbearer and I wasn’t sure what I would be tasked with since there was no actual body to carry for the service. I was somewhat prepared, but I wasn’t going to force the issue.
During the service, I was cool. There were a couple moments where I thought I would breakdown, but only a few tears welled up. As I watched other friends and family members of Curt go up and pay their respects I sat and I was fine. I was in a state of calm and reflection. Then as my cousin Shanna looked at Jason and told him to go up there, there was a change. A feeling in my spirit started taking over me. I had a discomfort, I got warm and my heart started to beat heavy like it was coming out of my chest. I couldn’t sit still and I wasn’t sure what was happening to me. as Jason waited his turn, the beating got deeper, the anxiety heightened and I wasn’t sure what to do. Then, it became clear, I got to go up there. I got to say something. Once I got up from my seat and stood on the wall, it was gone. The feeling of discomfort and the rapid beating of my heart was gone.
As Jason finished his words I met him at the end of the stage and gave him a hug. I grabbed the mic and asked everyone how they were doing. Not sure why cause that was the last thing I wanted to say. I explained how I had to come up here because my heart began to beat out of my chest. Then, I just spoke from the heart. I don’t remember verbatim, but I know I spoke to how Curt would speak during these times. How when we would experience the passing of other elder family member he would say “It’s on us now, Cuz” and how we were responsible for how the family would move and assist with the upbringing of other younger family members. I spoke about how he was committed to being motivated and evolving as person.
I also spoke to how in many ways we were alike. A Taurus, born in ’81 who was a fan of hip-hop and wrestling. It’s wild how when people shared stories about Curt it almost felt like they were talking about me. No matter what city or stage in life people met Curt, we all got the same genuine guy and irreplaceable soul.
I felt it was only right to close my final words with the type of quotes that would come up during our conversations. It could wrestling, motivational or hip-hop related. No matter the subject it would fall in one of those lanes. The first one I used was…
“If you believe you can or you can’t, you’re right” – Henry Ford
Then I ended with a hip-hop quote cause I know Curt was a fan of the artist and these bars truly did sum up a lot of his life and times.
“Stay far from Timid. Only make moves if your heart’s in it and live the phrase, Sky’s the limit” – Christopher Wallace “The Notorious B.I.G”
As I finished the Biggie line I saw the crowd react. I seen a few hands go up and laughter. I seen calm, please and love. Those were all the things Curt was to me and many others. I told him I loved him and made my exit. I was met with love and smiles from family. I got back to my seat and was at complete peace. I’m glad I didn’t miss my opportunity to say my final words and give respect to one of the greatest spirits in my life. We’ll never replace Curt, but he’s truly a spark in all of us to keep us going. He believed he could and would do many great things. I now understand he was sent to do those great things through us.
Thanks for sending me up there, Cuz! I literally wouldn’t have done it without you. Until next time.