You know, when my dad told me that Robin Williams had died, I could feel this sudden bang hit the gut of my heart as soon as my ears took in those words…and the one thing I could think of was, well…
I had never really been an avid fan of Robin Williams. Never really took a time to appreciate his skill, or watch many of his films, so I asked myself, why did I feel such a heavy pang as soon as I heard the news?
And I then suddenly I could just feel it. What even a few of his characters and films had been to my life. The memory of an impact he had made on my life in the mere seconds of a single scene, no matter the film or the story. I remembered the feeling of naturalness and sincerity watching Williams create a scene, a scene that all of a sudden became something so real. So not…a scene anymore. It was just this power that he naturally contained within him that radiated off to human in the audience watching him.
And that’s why I felt that pang of surprising overwhelming sadness. I could feel that naturalness of power he gave to me in the few roles I watched him create on the screen, and I realized that he wouldn’t be able to do that anymore, and it hurt.
Sometimes, when an actor, musician, leader, or writer that I know of dies, I wonder why it comes as such a shock, or pang of sadness. These are people I don’t even personally know, or met. But when I start to think about it, I realize what they added to my life. An impact, a feeling, laughter, happiness, inspiration that they gave to me, and knowing that I could never find some way to thank them for what they added to my life. It’s what I remember feeling when I realized Cory Montieth had died, or when Micheal Jackson had died. Or how I feel when I listen to the music George Harrison and John Lennon created for this world.
All these famous people. People I haven’t even met or people who don’t even know I exist. I wondered why they mattered to me. And it was because they each gave me something insanely precious to my life that made an impact.
I remember watching parts of The Dead Poets Society, Good Will Hunting, Jumanji, Aladdin…I remember his voice, his eyes, his smile of warmth, his natural human expression. I realize that what he gave me is incomparable to what he has given millions of people over the world, but it’s important to me to find some form to thank him for the treasured moments he did give me. Seriously Robin Williams, thank you.
It’s a crazy thing…what other humans can give to others, without even knowing each other.