This week marks the death of actors Carrie Fisher and her mother Debbie Reynolds and they’re just the most recent in a string of Hollywood deaths. Garry Shandling, Ricky Harris, George Michael and Alan Thicke are some others that come to mind. Their deaths have been wildly publicized as well as their accomplishments and who mourns them. Scrolling through Facebook and seeing those news ads and people’s posts about them has brought up some illogical and irrational thoughts and feelings. Why do they get to be remembered by hundreds of thousands of people who never knew them personally, and Aerilyn doesn’t? See? Illogical and not in the least bit rational.
I even saw an article about this woman, Tricia McCauley, who was found dead in her car after her disappearance. It said that she was an actress and was credited for a few tiny roles; things no one would recognize her from. Yet her headline was Actress Tricia McCauley Was Found Dead In Her Car. Curious as to who she was, I looked at the comments and low and behold, no one knew of her. She was a nobody to these people, yet her headline warranted thousands of people looking her up and “mourning” her. Again, why her and not Aerilyn?
It makes me feel silly and stupid for even comparing Aerilyn to these people who’ve been alive for decades and are household names from the big screen. Not to mention their contributions to their communities and self love. However, I’m envious of their lives for Aerilyn. Which again, is silly. She doesn’t know she wasn’t a movie star. She doesn’t know that millions of people aren’t mourning her. Her family mourning her is probably all she’d ever truly want just like everyone else. But sometimes grief isn’t logical. It isn’t rational and it certainly doesn’t make sense all the time. Who would have thought I’d be envious of those deaths? Talk about morbid!
So although these deaths make me sad and leave me with a sense of jealousy, I know I’ve done more than many to honor the passing of my child. A child deemed “incompatible with life” who pushed the boundaries and proved that she was indeed compatible with life. It was just shorter than most. Even though she didn’t have decades to influence the world, she had 40 weeks, 5 days and 37 minutes to change our world. And that was more than enough.