Friday, March 11, 2011

The Ghost in the Machine

I lost one of my best friends yesterday. Somehow it gets worse every time I have to say it or write it or even think about it. Personally, I don't want people telling me that she's in a better place or that it's part of God's plan, because where I am right now is: it's a stupid, messed-up world and stupid, messed-up things happen in it. This wasn't supposed to happen. And there's absolutely nothing I can do about it.

There are a lot of wonderful things I can say about Ginny. She was one of the most outspoken, crazy, fascinating people I've ever met. She was one of the best friends I've ever had. She gave amazing birthday presents, but more than that, she was always there for you if you needed to talk. She's the only person who called me on a regular basis after I moved just to see how things were going and how Calvin was doing. She's the one who gave me the idea of finding the baby tuxedo for him to wear to the wedding. She made me laugh, and she gave me a reason to go to the theatre. I know that I tried to be a good friend back. I'm not as good with the telephone, but we went through a lot of difficult stuff together. She called me on Sunday, the day before she went into the hospital, to thank me for a box I sent her with a whole bunch of random stuff in it--things to keep her entertained in the hospital, mostly--and then she wrote on my Facebook wall to tell me that she loved the CD I had made for her, that it was "like an aural photo album of the last 6 years!! LOVE YA SO MUCH!"

I told her a lot over the last few weeks how much I loved her. I'm glad I did.

What I keep thinking about, and what I can't escape, is how present she still is in my life. She has a blog that she won't write in anymore, a Facebook page that someone else will keep going, a Twitter account that will go dark. Her number is still in my cell phone, her email still in my contacts list, and more than 800 photos of her are floating around the Internet. In the last 12 hours her Facebook page has exploded with people offering condolences and memories, because that's how we do it nowadays: we maintain this presence, virtually, so that in a way we never have to totally let go. In many ways I'm glad of this. It makes us less alone. In some ways it's just a reminder of the things you lose, the voice you'll never hear again. That's especially hard, because Ginny was becoming a fantastic opera singer. She had pursued musical theatre for a long time and still did, but when she went to Italy senior year she dove into opera headfirst. I still have six recordings that she sent me at the beginning of December, before any of this blew up the way it did. There will be a time when I can listen to them again.

Every time I see the bridesmaid dress or the shoes I bought for the wedding, my stomach knots up, because there's this wonderful guy who loved Ginny so incredibly much, and I can't fathom what he's feeling right now. And there are her parents, for whom she was an only child, who were planning for a wedding that isn't going to happen. I know that as much as I hurt, what they're going through is infinitely harder. So even if you don't know them, please keep them in your thoughts.

I miss you, Ginny. Thank you. For everything.

1 comment:

  1. I know we weren't close, and didn't always get along, but my heart is breaking for all of us who knew her. I cannot imagine going through what you are, losing a best friend. I enjoyed e-stalking her and seeing her life really start to come together. I feel like all of us PTP's were really starting to get it together and grow up in strong and amazing people and I can't believe we don't get to see what amazing things were going to happen in her. Life sucks and it's stupid sometimes. I am so sorry for your loss.