Carrie Fisher said in her memoir Wishful Drinking being bipolar you are going fast or you are going sad. My sad manifests as a weight. Headache behind my eyes, my body droops, I feel physically being pushed down. Tears run down my face, I shake it off, the tears come again.

A second cousin of mine, 42, just died of cancer. She fought six years but two weeks ago she was brought home for hospice. Her profession was hospice nurse, and her best friend who is still a hospice nurse cared for her. G lives in California and my family and I are flying from NY to go to the funeral.

Parents burying a child. The horror you hear about sometimes and now it is brushing close to me and I feel guilty. Guilty about how frightened I am, how I need to process and grieve for G but a lot of what I feel is terror about the loves in my life, my family, will they get taken, because I believe in the randomness of the universe.

When we got the hospice news, I felt every sad story I ever heard flood into my brain and body, like electric shocks and then I felt exhaustion. I review my father’s death, recent deaths of people I know, Every horrible story, sad story, shocking story.

For me the death of this beautiful girl triggers my personal grief and for awhile I feel it all. I can’t think, I feel sick, I feel scared, crushed with guilt because this is about G not me. Doing what small thing we can for her family, show our faces.

I know from losing my dad that the tears and hugs and heartfelt words don’t really help. You are destroyed then you push through and make a life again, Now I am on the other side and I don’t know what to do or say, but we go. G’s father asked us to come.

G died and I cry. She was a unique and inspiring person. May I absorb some of her wonderful spirit and be more courageous in my life,

Until next time