i am angry.
I haven’t been on Facebook all day. It’s normal for me not to be on Facebook. Because Facebook mostly sucks. And Facebook, lately, is that call at 3 am that wakes you from a sound sleep–that one we all dread.
I checked it after work as I usually do. Five minutes, max. And the slap comes. Hard. As clear as her stunning eyes.
And the people bargaining with God. And the whispers about how someone my age could disappear forever last night. When she was fine.
And then the truth.
She was part of a community I was a part of. Some brilliant, beautiful stranger half a country away who wrote raw, honest things that people told me to read–because she wrote like I did. And she took these gorgeous photos that made me long for places I’d never been–ugly, dirty places that were somehow exquisite through the lens of her camera. We had real conversations over the Web–in ways that used to be possible and even common. We admired each other’s work and recommended things to one another on Goodreads.
I remember a particular time when she revealed something so incredibly heartbreaking that it took my breath away. And she stood up and shared just to help other people. I was one of her cheerleaders. Telling everyone I knew to support her work.
She was one of those people who seemed to have everything. More than anything, she had my respect. She was a survivor. We were friends because we spoke a common language. She inspired me to write–to keep fighting–to keep telling my story even when I thought I had nothing left.
Like many friendships I made during that time, we lost touch. I’d see her here and there and still get her book recommendations. She always read the most interesting things, and I almost always added them to my wishlist. Still.
But I could tell she was receding. Preparing. Like her mind was maybe made up. Isolating in that way some of us do. Still so sincere and so present, but not all here.
It was still shocking to see her face on my timeline with that awful word I’ve heard way too often this year. That awful word that keeps finding its way to the best people I’ve known.
As quickly as I saw it, I found myself angry. It’s a familiar place for me. Angry at her. Angry at myself because…maybe… Angry at the world that broke her heart to begin with.
Nearly every single day of my life, I find myself having the same conversations. With brilliant friends who don’t know who they are. Who feel lost. Every day, I beg them to keep going. But I am pissed at them. I am tired of throwing the rope. I am heartbroken for them. Mostly because I fucking get it.
Why her? Why not me?
What makes her different from me?
Why am I still here? Why? Why? Why?
Why am I the one always left wondering why?
Always left writing these fucking memorials and crying because they finally gave up on us.
I am so mad and so puzzled. Why am I one of the lucky ones who gets to stay?
We loved you, amazing girl.