Monday, September 8, 2008

remembering charlotte

I like to think we would have been good friends if Charlotte's life hadn't taken the turn it did, if she hadn't been in a bike accident when we were 20. As it was, she spent half her life in a coma, and a few weeks ago, she died.

We were only three days apart. Our parents had been friends in college. We only saw each other once a year, if that, when my family traveled to Astoria (a small town on the Oregon coast) to visit her family in their old, cozy house. But we never ran out of things to talk about, and sometimes we wrote to each other. We were both idealistic and sensitive. We loved books and dreamed of becoming writers, and I still have the books about writing that she loaned me the last time I saw her, during a visit at Christmas.

Seeing her obituary brings back those memories and makes me miss our budding friendship. And it makes me sad all over again that her promising life was altered as abruptly as it was. The picture her family chose makes her look like a young poet. I like to think she would have become a gifted writer, and that we'd talk over tea about the writing life during our trips to Astoria, and perhaps our children (if she'd decided to marry and have children) would play together. Is it wierd to say I miss her when I hadn't seen her for 20 years? I miss her.

God bless you, Charlotte.


Anonymous said...

It's not weird at all.
You missed her before; but now that she could never come out of the coma, you miss her permantly. I don't know how I would ever handle a loved one in a non-responsive state.

See you in a fortnight. (I've always wanted to use that word!)


Anonymous said...

Oh Em, I'm getting choked up at I look at Charlotte's picture. I had forgotten what a pretty girl she way. Like a young poet, you said.

I'll never forget when she drew the flower on my face, while waiting in line to get into the Grateful Dead concert. We just happened to run into her. I had lots of compliments on that flower!

- Susanne

k@lakly said...

Maybe she was finally able to let go because her mother had gone ahead of her. I hope they found each other, where ever they are now.
Thinking of you as you remember and reflect on a young life lost too soon.

Carey said...

I am sorry to hear of your loss. It is not strange to miss her, she was your friend, regardless of how long its been since youve seen her.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to hear about the loss of your friend, Emilie. It sounds like the two of you were kindred spirits. That you miss her and are saddened by her death seems natural to me.


Madwoman of Preserve Path said...

By grieving, we mourn what might have been as much as we miss what was.

Anonymous said...


What a tribute to her life and presence that she should pass and leave a little hole in your heart. She must have been amazing. I'm sorry for your loss.

I'm thankful you opened the comments again. Your community of friends is inspirational.

--Laura S.

Tammy said...

Not weird at all...

Ahuva Batya said...

What a sad, sad loss. I'm so sorry Emilie.