Friday, April 27, 2007

The Weirdness Of It All

I just have to say that I am heart-broken for Magazine Man and his family. So much to happen to one family in so little time- such great joy followed by the shock of such a tragedy. I can't tell you how many times I have thought about them today.

This got me to thinking about how strange it is to be a part of the blog world, whether as a reader or a writer (or both). There are some blogs I read and I feel so connected to the person writing it- whether as someone living a life similar to mine (engaged in their 20s), or someone with the same interests, or just good people. Magazine Man is different because the quality of his writing just sucks me in to his life and his family. When I read about his heroic Blaze rescue I CRIED. And then I was trying to tell someone else about it and guess what? Couldn't do it because I CRIED AGAIN! His is the first blog I ever regularly read.

I know that this probably sounds silly because it is so obvious, but to feel so connected to someone whose name I don't even know is such a strange concept to me. It isn't like reading a book or watching a movie, it is personal, it happens in real time. These are not fictional characters. I feel their ups and downs and wish that I could give them hugs in bad times and laugh along with them in the good times. I never thought about how personal blogging is. Not in the sense of someone finding my blog and, gasp, DISCOVERING MY SECRET IDENTITY (like I work hard to keep it a secret, I have really chilled out about that). But the reverse, when a terrible thing happens to a complete stranger and I feel like it has happened to my best friend. And the weirdest thing is that I can't say to my non-blogging friends, "Holy shit, can you believe what has happened to Magazine Man?" because they don't understand how it all works.


Heather Meadows said...

I was trying to explain how I felt about what happened to a friend of mine, and I wasn't especially successful.

It's still so surreal. I can't imagine them being dead, even though I've had a day to do so. They're like favorite characters in a book who are always there because I can always open the book again.

And in a sense, that's true. And there may yet be new stories written about them...stories I haven't heard.

But they aren't living. They aren't here to build stories the world at large hasn't seen yet.

I still can't wrap my head around it. It was such a sudden, stupid way to die.

I had an uncle die of a stroke while loading up his semi for a trip. He just...fell down, and never got back up.

He lived in Illinois, and I heard the news through my mother, who lives in Kentucky. All text. I didn't go to the funeral.

Sometimes when I'm driving and a semi passes me, I'll think, "Uncle Lee!" and smile.

And then I'll remember he's dead. And it just doesn't seem right.

That's kind of how this is.

Yet Another Heather said...

It is kind of like that. And these conversations always raise the debate in me- die fast or get to say goodbye. Because dying fast is good for me (very little pain, and getting it over with), but getting to say goodbye usually means lots of pain and suffering. I don't know which I would choose if I had to. I wouldn't want to leave my family and friends with unfinished business. At the same time, I'm a baby who is really afraid of things hurting.

Heather Meadows said...

I think dying at as old an age as possible is best. That way, people have already started to think about the fact that you will die, so even if you do slip away quietly in your sleep, they've had time to prepare.

And that's my plan for dying!

I'm not really afraid of dying, and I'm not even so much afraid of suffering, but the thought of not being able to do the things I want to do does bother me. So while I do plan to live to be 125, I also hope to be in good enough shape when I'm older that I won't be severely limited. My hope is that rather than being so sick I'm confined to a bed, I'll just keep going until one day I just stop.

That'd be ideal ;>

I wouldn't want a sudden death, because I'd like to have time to experience what it's like coming to grips with mortality. I've done it once, sort of, but I was feverish and the danger passed in one night. That experience is why I don't fear death, but I would like to go beyond that and come to some sort of understanding of it. The understanding I seek, I feel, won't come to me unless I have lived a very long time.

Yet Another Heather said...

Oh hell yes, dying when you are old and healthy and it is just old age is definitely the BEST way to go. My grandmother is in the middle of getting her affairs in order, and she's at the very respectable age of 80. There is absolutely nothing wrong with her, so she wants to make sure that all of her wishes will be followed NOW, when she can express herself. She's sharp as a tack, I can certainly see her going strong for another 20 years. But even if she doesn't, it is good to know that she's had a very full and fulfilling life and we will all know what to do when she's gone.

Right now at 28 I can't even comprehend getting all of that together. I mean, I could if it came right down to it and something unexpected happened, because we all have that strength we never think we do. The only time I ever came close to thinking about my own mortality came during a very bad plane ride when I was 16, and the plane was struck by lightning and it wasn't so much a plane as a roller coaster. All it did for me was relieve me of any fear of flying for the rest of my life. Statistically, the chances of that happening again are pretty slim, especially when you consider that I am not a pilot.

Anyway, my grandmother always says she'd rather wear out than rust out. I guess we second that idea! :)

Heather Meadows said...

My grandma is the same--in her 80s, taking care of business, and apparently not going to quit anytime soon. There was a time after Grandpa died where she became very frail and sick and it seemed like she'd follow him...but slowly she started finding reasons to get up in the morning, and now she's dating someone. It's cute :>