Imprint

Five days ago a twitter friend of mine (@Clubnette) passed away. Word came to me from a mutual friend. The news shocked me. I still remember cupping my mouth and shouting “oh my god!” enough for coworkers to ask if everything was okay.

“Yeah…” I respond after a while. “Something happened…” I brush it off, still trying to figure out if the news was real, or if perhaps it was part of a cruel joke, or part of an incoherent string of messages. But no.

Stunned. I had no words. Nothing. I could do nothing. Sad. Angry. Hopeless. There was absolutely nothing I could do in that moment and as my eyes welled up, I did the only thing I could do. I cried. The emotions washed over me, much more than I expected. I hadn’t cried in a very long time. The only words that came next, were ones that would haunt me every day since then: It’s not fair.

I kept repeating the words, over and over in my head. Each time with more anger, accusatory anger at the ether that had not only wronged me, but robbed me. Guilt would soon saunter in, for while this was an online friend, I hadn’t yet met in person. I certainly didn’t know her as well as those closer; family, and other loved ones. How dare I feel the way I do.

But the roller coaster wouldn’t end, repeating this same pattern throughout the day. I’d be okay, and then not. Was I seriously doing this? Is this normal?

I posted the following on my facebook:

Grief over the loss of someone is an odd thing. This feels so unfair, and while everyone agrees and people even say “life is unfair” it does nothing to quell the pain, the anger, the void. I feel personally robbed of this person and yet i feel so selfish for feeling anything at all because others also loved her and knew her better than me. There’s no winning in this capricious cycle of emotions. But then again, it’s not about winning, as much as the pain is testament to how much she meant to me.

I love that my friends commented their support. One reply stood out that made me feel a little better:

It doesn’t matter who loved her or knew her. You bear her imprint on your heart and on your life. Your sorrow is a testament to her impact on you. it isn’t selfish. It’s individual. No one else had the relationship with this person that you did. No one has or ever will have the same affect on you as she did. You get to grieve that without guilt. I am sorry.

Her words helped. Tremendously. It allowed me to just let me feel, let me experience the only thing I could do; grieve.

It’s just not fair.

And for the most part I remind myself how lucky I was to have just experienced a sliver of her in my life. For that, I am truly grateful.

And although we’d go a long time without talking, I’d be reminded of her presensce whenever she would favorite something on my timeline. Any other day I’d wake up to a stream of notifications that she’d been through my timeline favoriting things. That always made me smile. I will miss that so much.

And that’s sort of the relationship we had. We’d go a while without talking, but pick up right where we left off. When we had a rough day, we’d talk about running away in our very own TARDIS. She’d joke about my imaginary tutu i’d wear (hidden blades in the folds), and talk about just start anew.

I find myself going to her twitter account, somehow hoping that she’d post something, but she doesn’t. There are no notifications that she’s favorited anything. There’s no random stream of poetry in my timeline from her.

It’s just not fair.

I think I stalked just about every family member tied to her twitter account and website. Reality sinks in again as the many condolences fly by, the many photos of her, the many unspoken words.

It’s just not fair.

It’s all so sudden and there’s been no firm word on what happened. All we know is she passed away in her sleep. And it’s true, like many have said, in the end it doesn’t matter.

Thank you, Nette. Thank you for leaving your imprint, because yes, you left one in me. You really did.

You can find her Etsy work here: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/ClubNettePrintShop

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