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Friday, December 26, 2008

Friday Blog Roundup

On Christmas Eve Day, I drove Josh to the metro in the morning and then returned home. As we turned on to our street, I could see four turkey vultures lined up on my neighbour's porch. On closer inspection, I could see them everywhere--squatting on the roof, hanging out in trees. They were flying around my house lazily. It was ominous to say the least. And to be fair, the whole day went to shit.

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At night we went to see Milk. The movie made me cry so hard that I had a headache still on Christmas Day. The thought I kept returning to was when Milk was discussing how detrimental being in the closet was for the cause.

He argues that if people cannot put a human face to the issue, they can dehumanize it. It is too easy to be against something when you don't have to see the grey; when you don't realize that the thing you are against is tied to someone you love.

And at the same time, others call into question how you can feel comfortable leaving the closet when you know what you will lose. It is a terrible Catch-22: you cannot get rid of the hatred until everyone can attach a face and you cannot attach a face because of the intensity of the hatred. There is no good answer, especially when those who come forth can point backwards at the anger and misunderstanding and cruelty.

This is obviously close to my heart.

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Usually, I write about the best blog posts that I read in this space. Today, I want to speak about a blogger instead.

Emilie of Lemmondrops died on the 23rd at night. Writing that feels very surreal. I cannot begin to imagine what her husband, Steve, and boys are feeling. Her parents.

At the bottom of Emilie's blog is a quote widget and as I write this, the quote reads: "a discovery is said to be an accident meeting a prepared mind." When I first googled infertility blogs, it was a prepared mind searching for a somewhat accidental crash. And I discovered Soupy and Serenity and Emilie and Vee and LisaP. I found Cali's old old blog and Manuela and Lyrehca and KatD and Flicka and Miss E. I found Kir and Bea and Teamwinks and Julie and Tertia. These were some of my first reads.

I often say that if I could have found an older high schooler's diary back when I was a freshman, I probably would have had an easier time navigating high school; navigating those huge emotions; thinking I was the only one. And that is what blogs did for me when I was starting to fall into that black pit again and how can you ever say thank you enough for that?

I can't believe I'm never going to see another post pop up in my reader, that I will never get another email. I just can't believe that she's gone. And what a huge loss for the whole world--that this amazing woman, this brilliant, funny, sensitive, thoughtful writer is gone.

A few months back, I highlighted one of her posts in the Roundup and I wanted to place it here again. It is even more bitter knowing the otherwise.
Lastly, Emilie at Lemmondrops first made me cry with the poem "Otherwise" (I literally couldn't get through the first verse without crying as I read it aloud to Josh) and then this post. There are no good words. I just wanted her to know how much this post touched me and how it's still making me cry as I write about it. Emilie was one of the first bloggers I read and her blog is at the top of my bookmarked list. So. I'm sorry, sweetie. I wish it were easier.
Rest easy, sweetie. Know how much you meant to so many people in this world--both people you knew face-to-face and the hundreds of people who read your writing daily and were touched beyond words.

26 comments:

MrsSpock said...

I spent a good part of Wed night bursting into tears at odd moments. My husband thought I was nuts. I didn't even know this women, but her death affected me greatly. I think, mostly it was because I could 100% see myself in her shoes. Just the thought of leaving my husband and young son tore my heart.

I was the nurse for the stillbirth of a 19 week boy, and the words of my patient's Iranian husband keep ringing in my ears, "It's not always our neighbor who suffers- sometimes we have to take our share of it too."

The idea of when my share will come fills me with fear- and reminds me to cherish today.

Rebecca said...

My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who knew and was touched by Emilie.

(((HUGS)))

sariel & shlomit said...

Thanks for sharing this.
peace
shlomit

Cara said...

What a tribute, Mel. When I logged on last night and read of Emilie's passing, I was devestated. Like Mrs. Spock, my husband thought I was a little touched. I tried to explain how there is another world within the one we live in- a group of women so connected that we can visit a blog for the first time and be touched to the core.

As I was explaining, I think I finally got it for the first time - how deep my connections are in this computer.

I cried myself to sleep. My headache is going strong - but it is a clear reminder to live the day and embrace life.

To Emilie - rest in peace, pain free, as you watch over your family.

Tash said...

What a beautiful tribute, Mel. I'm just crushed for those who knew her personally like yourself, and absolutely devastated for her family. I only began reading her months ago, and found her writing brutally honest and incredibly humbling.

battynurse said...

Beautiful post Mel.

Kristin said...

Thank you for this tribute Mel. I didn't read Emilie's blog all the time but it never failed to affect me deeply whenever I did read it. I am sitting here and typing through my tears.

nancy said...

I knew you were going to write about this and I was anxious to see it. What wonderful words.

When I heard a day later (yesterday) abdout Emilie and had posted about it, I just walked into our bedroom with a house full of sleeping children and burst into tears into my husband's arms. Ugh, she'll be missed.

(the 1st 4 letters of the word verification for this post is "dies". Should I just not continue this day and go back to bed?)

luna said...

what an inspiration her grace is. such a tragedy -- my heart aches for her family. her words will continue to touch all who encounter them.

loribeth said...

I too was in tears when I read Emilie's husband's post the other night -- so soon after her last post. I had hoped she would have more time with those two beautiful children. :( Thank you, Mel, for "introducing" me to her (& I suspect many other bloggers). She was an amazing person.

jbondsgirl said...

I couldn't sleep Weds. night thinking of Emilie and her family. She and her family weighed heavy on my heart all of Christmas day as well. It doesn't seem fair. She was as prepared as anyone ever is. But I wish, selfishly, that she could have had longer. For herself...and for me. Because there is so much more she had to teach me and I'd only just begun to learn from her.

~Flicka

Jen J said...

What an amazingly beautiful post, Mel. I suspect there will be a great many bloggers in spirit at her funeral.

Julia said...

What a lovely, moving tribute. I remember that post from the roundup, and I remember being so very touched by it. As I was again, having just reread it now. My heart hurts for her family, and for many friends, virtual or otherwise, that she has touched with her life and her words. Thank you for helping her continue to do that, even today.

Another Dreamer said...

What a beautiful post. She is and will be greatly missed.

Betty M said...

A lovely tribute. I found Emilie about a year ago and had been following her since. I was shocked to see Steve's post so soon after she went home to hospice although she had foreshadowed just how unwell she had become. What a woman she was. I am glad to have "known" her even for such a short time.

Lyrehca said...

I did not know/read Emilie, but a beautiful post nonetheless, Mel.

Sue said...

What a loss to her family, to us, but what a legacy she leaves.

I would suggest that as a comfort, but I know there is no comfort now. I wish them peace, whenever it comes.

Queenie. . . said...

I logged on for a few minutes Christmas morning, and saw Steve's post about Emily. I found myself sobbing to my husband about her as he was in the shower. I knew from her last post that she was going into hospice, but I really thought we'd have her for a little bit longer. I have learned a lot of things from her.

Cibele said...

I was in shock when I read the post that her husband wrote. I just sat in front of my computer and cried. I cried for her boys, for her husband, I can only imagine how hard it is for them. I found her blog via lost and found and I been following her journeys since September 2007. It all happened so fast, I can't believe it. One of her post that most touched me was this one "Sometimes my desire to live, to hold onto this world, hits me full force, like it did this morning when I was driving across the Mississippi River with Daniel on the way to the mall, and the chilly air winked with sunshine, and K.D. Lang's version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" was playing on the CD player, and I turned around to see how Daniel was liking the song, and we held each others' gaze just long enough until I needed to watch the road again, and tears came to my eyes because I love this life, this music, this autumn, my family, so much. "
She loved her life so much, I wish she was still here

Cibele said...

I was thinking. Her 2 sons deserve to know how loved and admired their mother was by so many of us. Maybe all of these messages should be printed and put in a form of book for her 2 boys. I know she did the books with her blog for each one of them already. What do you think?

tragicoptimist said...

Thank you for your beautiful tribute, and thank you for introducing me to Emilie through Lost & Found. I feel like I never have the right words in times like these, but you did.

She will be so missed. Like others, I had so wished that she and her boys and husband could have had more time together.

Kara said...

Such an inspiration, thank you for sharing this.

I have just spent the last hour getting to know Emilie and my heart is just breaking.

Liddy said...

What a beautiful post. I just read a bit about Emilie. My thoughts are with her family.

JamieD said...

I didn't know Emilie in the beginning but recently learned her story.

It catches my breath.

Vee said...

I only discovered Emilie's blog, in fact her last post was my first time and I promptly added her to Reader. I was in shock when I read the next post. It scares me knowing it is the same kind of cancer as Max's and that it took her so quickly.

What an amazing woman. My thoughts are with her family and friends.

Geohde said...

Even though it was not entirely unexpected, Emilie's death, more specifically the speed at which it seemed to happen in the end was what really got to me.

J