I lost a very, very old friend over the weekend. The illness was sudden, acute, and ultimately fatal. In less than a week, she was gone.
We weren't so close that her material absence will affect me on a daily basis. I didn't see her often. But I respected her, and she had an effect on who I am today. Without her I would be a slightly different version of me, not the me I am.
My own grief and pain is still daily, and pressing. It's right and fair, it's proof I loved someone, and so it's not something I want to turn away from or bury. I cared about her, and I am reasonably sure she cared about me, but this is nowhere near as devastating to me as it is for others who knew her better, saw her more, loved her in ways that I did not. That hurts to see. All the pain I can't help alleviate in any real way.
So it hurts, yeah, and it is frightening to know that someone so young could die so suddenly -- she was DECADES away from a reasonable age to go. It's terrifying to watch this happen, knowing how helpless everyone was to stop it, seeing how it left everyone bereft, and how all of us, every one, is going to go through a version of this with someone they love.
That bit, the anxiety over the unavoidable future, is the part that's been hardest to cope with. I know how to grieve, and grief is not unhealthy. Anxiety doesn't help anyone.
So yeah, that's been a little rough.
I'm also doing some really hard work in therapy. Working on old trauma that is holding me back.
And I'm doing some medical stuff that has also been difficult -- I'm over one of the big humps, and things are going so fucking well with that I can hardly believe it, but it was really stressful going in, and there is more difficult stuff ahead of me. The goal of the therapy is to get me well enough to do it. I'm not looking forward to it, but it's a thing I'd like to have in the rearview, not the passenger seat. You know?
I am caught in the middle of a complicated and frightening life that is nevertheless very beautiful. I am doing well, I am doing poorly, I am doing everything at once, feeling everything at once. It's hard and it's easy, it's good and it's bad. It's all so unstable. All I know is that I don't care how fucked up everything is, I want to be here. I am happy to be here. This is a good place to be, even when it's terrible. I very much want to live. I am very glad to have a future again.
ETA: She was an organ donor, and that saved lives. I have registered to become one. I urge you to consider doing so as well, if you are able.