I tend to write rarely these days, both in this blog and in the context of my books. I want to write, but my body and heart aren’t in it.
One of the reasons for the shift in attitude is the loss of a long-distance friend, one whose brilliance and meticulous attention to detail was nothing short of amazing. I think all of my readers knew her – there was a distinct overlap in the blog world we shared. Her name was Harriet – aka L’Empress – and therein lies the sting, because she passed on to the next plane four weeks ago.
Not all of my readers know she was a marvelous editor and touchstone for some of the things I wrote. I don’t know how many knew she was a Lady – not in the courtly sense, but in every sense that matters.
I’d been reading her blog for a while, with its wry observations, its thoughful commentary and its occasional biting wit. I saw the quick decline at the end and hoped I was wrong. I don’t pretend to understand the devastation her family experienced at how quickly she departed. For her sake, I’m grateful, because it means less time suffering. Cancer is not a pretty or glamorous end to any life. It’s brutally painful and doesn’t care whether you’re Republican, Democrat, kind, ruthless, rich or poor. My sincere hope is that Harriet’s last days were as comfortable and as peaceful as possible given the impossibility handed to her. I know without being told that she handled it with the same kind of grace and aplomb that I’d like to claim but won’t ever quite attain.
How do I know?
It’s simply who she was.
I miss you, Harriet.