I was 6 when Star Wars came out. I guess I was old enough to see it in the theatre, because I remember the experience. Justine, now 6, is really into Star Wars movies too. She dressed like Leia for Halloween. The Princess was a great role model for little girls then and now. We are both sad about Carrie Fisher’s death (as is Maki, who has been a Star Wars fan since he was very young himself.) We ALL grew up with her in our hearts.
So many beloved entertainers and cultural lights have gone out this year. This is what happens when you love people…they die. We all know it, but yet we keep loving them. People we know and people we don’t know. Its been fascinating to see Death come to the surface so much in our society this year… to join others in grief on this strange scale. As a culture, we’ve always been crazy about our celebrities—especially those who die young. But it seems we have come to a place where we imagine they will never die…even when they are of age. David Bowie died last January, nearly a year ago, and it set off a seeming trajectory for so many other lights that followed his trend. I probably noticed it more because it seemed like there was this general grief of a generation or two alongside our family’s. What a year to go! Lots of good company.
But the year ended with Carrie Fisher (one of my favorite writers, who did worlds of good towards the forces of honest sharing and mental health) and then a day later, her mother, Debbie Reynolds, one of the last queens of Hollywood’s Golden Era passed away too, we can only suspect it was a broken heart. The two were tied through so many issues, so much spotlight (negative and positive), walks through drug addiction an need for attention, etc. They were bonded in love. I can’t help but think how I would feel if my own mother died (I would want to die) or if my daughter died (I would want to die) so in this way, I can imagine a little of what they would have felt. Being a loving daughter and a loving mother, I am deeply touched by the closeness of their deaths. I think many of us are. Death is a horrible part of life (the end of life, actually) but there is poignant beauty there too. It is the end of the journey.
Let us journey well. May the force be with you.