Vaya con Dios, Lu. November 22, 2008 10:47 AM   Subscribe

My friend Soulbee has left us.

Alexandra Clare Wilich, 28, died unexpectedly Sunday, Nov. 16, 2008.

I'm not really sure what to say - I feel kind of numb. We became close friends after a question she asked a while back. This time 7 days ago we were chatting and trading music with each other. She really loved Dan Bern.

She was known as Lexi or Lu to her friends and family. The service is this Monday in NH if any of you would like to attend with me.
posted by allkindsoftime to MetaFilter-Related at 10:47 AM (296 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

"Happy little soulful bees." Oh man. So sorry to hear this sad news.

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posted by ottereroticist at 10:52 AM on November 22, 2008


Apologies - the service was this past Monday and I missed it. I've been staring at the article in kind of a haze. I googled news for Lu this morning after not hearing from her all week, which seemed odd. This is officially my worst day on the internet.
posted by allkindsoftime at 10:55 AM on November 22, 2008


Godspeed little Soulbee.
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posted by isopraxis at 11:17 AM on November 22, 2008


My sincerest condolences.

Every friend who dies takes a piece of us along with them. Fortunately, we get it back when we reach the other side.
posted by baphomet at 11:21 AM on November 22, 2008 [2 favorites]


I'm so sorry to hear this - have you spoken to her parents?

"To live in hearts we leave behind
Is not to die.
~ Hallowed Ground, Thomas Campbell (1777-1844)"
posted by HopperFan at 11:21 AM on November 22, 2008 [6 favorites]


Sorry you missed the closure of the funeral. You have done all you could for Soulbee's memory. RIP.
posted by Cranberry at 11:21 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm sorry for your loss.
posted by box at 11:22 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm sorry. That's lousy.

Looking at her AskMe question history, it looks like it had been a tough year or two for her. I'm sure your friendship was greatly prized during this time.

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posted by availablelight at 11:25 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry. My heart goes out to you and her family.
posted by scody at 11:30 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry. She has some beautiful pictures posted on her blog.
posted by Sailormom at 11:35 AM on November 22, 2008


Oh no! She wrote me a kind email to thank me for an askme answer, I thought she was a lovely person.

I'm so sorry, allkindsoftime.
posted by jamaro at 11:39 AM on November 22, 2008


28. That just seems so shockingly young to me.

She was doing some nice photo work on her blog. This is very sad.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:41 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry allkindsoftime, but are you positive the service hasn't happened? The story was published Thursday (two days ago) and said the service would be Monday.
posted by piratebowling at 11:42 AM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Solon and Thanks at 11:42 AM on November 22, 2008


I meant has, not hasn't in that first sentence. Anyway, again, this is all terribly sad news.
posted by piratebowling at 11:43 AM on November 22, 2008


I just spoke to the funeral home in charge of services. That service will, in fact, be this upcoming Monday at 11am. You have not missed it.
posted by ColdChef at 11:50 AM on November 22, 2008 [20 favorites]


A great fighter in the war against Mercury. I'm sorry for your loss.
posted by casarkos at 11:50 AM on November 22, 2008


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posted by MythMaker at 11:53 AM on November 22, 2008


I'm very sorry to hear this. Depression is such an awful illness. It claims such wonderful people. You and her friends and family have my utmost sympathy.

I think that piratebowling is right - the ceremony will be held in two days. I hope you find some healing there.
posted by Dasein at 11:53 AM on November 22, 2008


Very sorry for your loss... :(
posted by vito90 at 11:59 AM on November 22, 2008


Well, one small bright spot. I just got off the phone with Lexi's uncle and I was mistaken - the service will be held this *coming* Monday in NH. I'll be driving up from NYC, again - if anyone would like to attend please let me know and I'll get you the information.

Lexi had a lot of different networks and metafilter was just one of them. Her uncle hadn't heard of us but was very interested to have more insight into her last days via this site.
posted by allkindsoftime at 12:07 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, on preview - thanks piratebowling and ColdChef, really appreciate it. I'm having a fucked up and confusing day. Sorry.
posted by allkindsoftime at 12:09 PM on November 22, 2008


Just a few weeks ago, she contacted me to thank me for a comment that I made in an anonymous question that she posted. We had me-mailed back and forth a bit. She was lovely, just lovely. I've been wanting to ping her again for a few days just to check in but didn't want to seem like I was prying. This news absolutely devastates me. I pray that she has found peace.
posted by pearlybob at 12:10 PM on November 22, 2008


Very sad.
posted by spork at 12:33 PM on November 22, 2008


Condolences to all.
posted by arcanecrowbar at 12:36 PM on November 22, 2008


Holy cow.

Soulbee's just about a neighbor of mine, which we discovered last year when she posted a very sad note about her SO and I recognized the news story. I have been in touch with her a couple times over the year and had hoped to run across her IRL so we could meet. She mentioned just a couple weeks ago that she thought she saw me in the Halloween Parade. This is awfully sad.
posted by Miko at 12:48 PM on November 22, 2008


That is so young.

I'm sorry to hear such a great person is gone, but I'm glad you can attend services.

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posted by ignignokt at 12:50 PM on November 22, 2008


Deep condolences to you on the loss of your friend.

Not to be impolite or rude, but do you how or why she died? There doesn't seem to be any details.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:55 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 1:00 PM on November 22, 2008


How terribly sad.
posted by dhammond at 1:09 PM on November 22, 2008


This is tragic. I don't use that word lightly - in fact I never use it - but that kind of grief is so hard to come back from and she was just so young. I'm so sorry.
posted by DarlingBri at 1:09 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh, this is terribly sad. I might be able attend a funeral Monday, or funeral home Sunday. I have a gmail account.
posted by theora55 at 1:14 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by yeoz at 1:15 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 1:24 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Caduceus at 1:26 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh, so young.

May you have a safe passage, soulbee, and I'm so very sorry for your loss, soulbee's family and allkindsoftime. Take care.
posted by goo at 1:32 PM on November 22, 2008


Deepest sympathies to you and to her family. Her contributions to this site made an impact on me, too.

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posted by juliplease at 1:33 PM on November 22, 2008


Sorry allkindsoftime.

Not to be impolite or rude, but do you how or why she died? There doesn't seem to be any details.

Generally if it is intentionally omitted you don't really want to know, or it is wished to remain unknown. Prying is kind of rude. especially in a public forum. It would be better to ask your question in a message if your morbid curiosity must be satisfied. (Not trying to be rude, just firm.)
posted by loquacious at 1:35 PM on November 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


oh no! i am so sorry :(
posted by jtron at 1:36 PM on November 22, 2008


I am so sorry. I dropped you a note, allkindsoftime.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:46 PM on November 22, 2008


That's so terrible. Condolences to you and her family. I'm glad you didn't miss the funeral.
posted by lilac girl at 1:47 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by paisley henosis at 2:01 PM on November 22, 2008


:(
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:07 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by youcancallmeal at 2:09 PM on November 22, 2008


I feel like printing that thread and her obit out and taking it to her pdoc and pharmacist. The fucks.
posted by allkindsoftime at 2:10 PM on November 22, 2008 [7 favorites]


My God. I am so so sorry. What a horrible tragedy.

I just can't believe some people have to suffer this much in life.

Please take a moment to visit the not-for-profit that her family is asking for contributions to in memorial, Arts in Reach. It looks to be a wonderful program.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 2:11 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry, allkindsoftime.
posted by lukemeister at 2:13 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by fixedgear at 2:14 PM on November 22, 2008


Well hell.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:16 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by chairish at 2:20 PM on November 22, 2008


I just spoke to the funeral home in charge of services. That service will, in fact, be this upcoming Monday at 11am. You have not missed it.
posted by ColdChef

[you're a good man, ColdChef.]
posted by availablelight at 2:20 PM on November 22, 2008 [5 favorites]


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posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:25 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


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posted by Navelgazer at 2:25 PM on November 22, 2008


Stuff like this, it...

Fuck

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posted by Dumsnill at 2:25 PM on November 22, 2008


Aw, man, I remember that Mercury retrograde question, I had fun looking up the correspondences.

I know what it's like to lose a close friend unexpectedly, and I'm truly sorry for your loss. My condolences to her friends and family.
posted by malocchio at 2:34 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by amyms at 2:35 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by burnmp3s at 2:36 PM on November 22, 2008


So sorry to hear about this. Ugh.

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posted by palmcorder_yajna at 2:49 PM on November 22, 2008


What terrible news. I had also been touched by some of her posts, and she seemed like a very nice person. My condolences.
posted by gemmy at 2:53 PM on November 22, 2008


Damn! I'm so sorry.
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 2:53 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Deathalicious at 2:54 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by ericb at 2:54 PM on November 22, 2008


Holy hell -- that thread and this one --

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posted by Countess Elena at 2:56 PM on November 22, 2008


so sorry, allkindsoftime.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 2:56 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh gosh. I'm sorry, allkindsoftime, and my heart goes out to her family as well.
posted by katillathehun at 3:00 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Stynxno at 3:01 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Mitheral at 3:04 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by purpleclover at 3:04 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Pater Aletheias at 3:05 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh, this is really sad. I'm very sorry to hear this. My condolences.
posted by oneirodynia at 3:11 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by dhruva at 3:15 PM on November 22, 2008


shit
posted by geekyguy at 3:17 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by arimathea at 3:19 PM on November 22, 2008


My goodness, this is sad indeed. 28 is far too young for anyone to pass away. My condolences to allkindsoftime and her family. *hugs to everyone*
posted by arishaun at 3:23 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Houstonian at 3:28 PM on November 22, 2008


Any Metafilter user's passing diminishes all of us. Sorry to you and soulbee's family for your/their loss. May she rest in peace and may you all find solace in the days ahead.
posted by Lynsey at 3:34 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:41 PM on November 22, 2008


Wow. I'm shocked and sad. Even dealing with her own tragedies, she seemed to go out of her way to be kind, supportive, and helpful with others' problems.

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posted by fiercecupcake at 3:42 PM on November 22, 2008


Wow. Her voice is going to be missed around here. I am so sorry to hear this.
posted by selfmedicating at 3:43 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Wilder at 3:43 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by mediareport at 3:44 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Thin Lizzy at 3:46 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by motty at 3:51 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 3:56 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so very very sorry for you and everyone else who is personally touched by this tragic loss. My thoughts go out to you.
posted by shmegegge at 3:58 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so very sorry. We had me-mailed a couple of times after I answered one of her askme's.

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posted by rmd1023 at 4:01 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh no. I am so sorry to hear this. My heart goes out to you, allkindsoftime, and to all of Lexi's family and friends. This is just awful.
posted by shiu mai baby at 4:02 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by readery at 4:12 PM on November 22, 2008


This is truly terrible.
posted by puke & cry at 4:19 PM on November 22, 2008


This makes me ineffably sad.
posted by steef at 4:29 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry, allkindsoftime.
posted by rtha at 4:29 PM on November 22, 2008


This is really, really sad. I remember reading about her boyfriend and feeling for her deeply, what an absolutely terrible thing to have to cope with. I'm glad she got her tattoo.

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posted by fire&wings at 4:33 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fuck. I am so so so sorry. So sorry. She was four years and one day older than me. That's just not right.

Rest well Soulbee, you were someone that seemed to shine through the chaos.
posted by saturnine at 4:40 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by stet at 4:49 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by sueinnyc at 5:02 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by mudpuppie at 5:03 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by By The Grace of God at 5:17 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by ob at 5:26 PM on November 22, 2008


Gosh that is so sad.
posted by unknowncommand at 5:31 PM on November 22, 2008


There are no words for the sadness I'm feeling right now. no words.
posted by puke & cry at 5:35 PM on November 22, 2008


Dammit, that is terrible. I wish peace for all who knew her.
posted by Divine_Wino at 5:40 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by elfgirl at 5:42 PM on November 22, 2008


I don't know what to say. She was my friend. I can't find words here. I am devastated.

I emailed with her two days before. She had a good day, and even offered me some cheer up advice because I was not having a good one.

I have AskMetafilter to thank for the time that I got to be her friend. I wish there was something more that I could have done. I am so sorry Lexi.

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posted by iamkimiam at 5:44 PM on November 22, 2008


This is terrible news, I feel as though I knew her. RIP sweetie.
posted by lee at 5:56 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by YoBananaBoy at 6:15 PM on November 22, 2008


heartbreaking.



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posted by Space Kitty at 6:15 PM on November 22, 2008


I am so sorry to hear this. My thoughts and prayers go out to all who knew her.
posted by lleachie at 6:17 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by snsranch at 6:23 PM on November 22, 2008


What a terrible turn of events, I am so sorry allkindsoftime - my condolences.

I was reading back on her questions, what a difficult year she's had. And I was shocked to read about her boyfriend's self immolation - I had heard about that event, I didn't know him, but years ago I knew his dad from the chain of restaurants the family owns. I was so bowled over when I learned of his son's terrible death - but I had no idea that there was anyone here on mefi with a connection to that sad event. Sadness all around. Her postings and comments reveal her to be a gentle and loving soul, but she was weighed down with terrible pain. It's heartbreaking, she died far too young.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:33 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Rock Steady at 6:36 PM on November 22, 2008


That's awful, and I feel bad for you. Thank you for letting us know. It makes people here feel one step closer to family to me.
posted by cashman at 6:41 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by plinth at 6:42 PM on November 22, 2008


RIP. Terrible news. I had enjoyed her questions. My very sincere condolences.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:50 PM on November 22, 2008

I'm glad she got her tattoo.
QFT

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posted by MrMoonPie at 6:53 PM on November 22, 2008


God, how awful. I'm so sorry.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:06 PM on November 22, 2008


Farewell.
posted by hermitosis at 7:06 PM on November 22, 2008 [7 favorites]


I just feel so sorry for everyone.

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posted by The Light Fantastic at 7:20 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by scottymac at 8:01 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by drezdn at 8:06 PM on November 22, 2008


"Prying is kind of rude. especially in a public forum."

No it's not. If we're expected to mourn, we should know what happened.
posted by bardic at 8:12 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Elegy for Heraclitus

They told me, Heraclitus, they told me you were dead;
They brought me bitter news to hear and bitter tears to shed;
I wept, as I remembered, how often you and I
Had tired the sun with talking, and sent him down the sky.

And now that thou art lying, my dear old Carian guest,
A handful of grey ashes, long, long ago at rest,
Still are thy pleasant voices, thy nightingales, awake;
For Death, he taketh all away, but these he cannot take.

Callamachus (trans. William Johnson Cory)
posted by oflinkey at 8:15 PM on November 22, 2008 [16 favorites]


If we're expected to mourn, we should know what happened.

What happened is that she died. Mourning her loss is not dependent on knowing the circumstances of her death.
posted by scody at 8:19 PM on November 22, 2008 [12 favorites]


"Mourning her loss is not dependent on knowing the circumstances of her death."

Actually, it's quite crucial. If she committed suicide (as I'm assuming) then I feel very sad for this person I didn't know. That kind of pain is terrible.

As mentioned, this is a public forum. How could someone post an obit thread and not expect people to know more about what happened?
posted by bardic at 8:25 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Reading back on her former questions, she also had some rather odd health issues. Let's not jump to conclusions.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 8:30 PM on November 22, 2008


Bardic, this isn't the time or place for the questions and I regret my own queries on the subject. Waiting to know is understandable, but a lot of people are upset and grieving right now, so out of respect for Soulbee and them, it would be best to let it go for now.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:35 PM on November 22, 2008



As mentioned, this is a public forum. How could someone post an obit thread and not expect people to know more about what happened?


I'm going to assume that you missed the part in the initial post that states that the poster was a friend of Soulbee. Your insistence on knowing the details is hurtful and inappropriate, and your attempts to justify it are even more so. Just stop.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 8:36 PM on November 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


please, let's not turn this into a debate about when it is or isn't appropriate to ask how or why. just let it drop.
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:40 PM on November 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


Lo, there do I see my father.
Lo, there do I see my mother,
and my sisters, and my brothers.
Lo, there do I see the line of my people,
Back to the beginning.
Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla
Where the brave may live
Forever.

- Viking Prayer
posted by Effigy2000 at 8:46 PM on November 22, 2008 [8 favorites]


How could someone post an obit thread and not expect people to know more about what happened?

This is one of the most disappointing presumptive statements I've ever seen around here. I'm likely misinterpreting your defense of what I feel is equivalent to rubbernecking at a tragic calamity. But if anything should be assumed, it is empathy and respect for the ones who are hurting because a person they knew and loved is gone. How she came to be gone is irrelevant to you and I, because you and I never knew her. That she is gone is the only relevance. She is gone and many people are sad because of it.

John Donne:
"No man is an island, entire of itself...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee."
posted by isopraxis at 8:51 PM on November 22, 2008 [6 favorites]


I am so sorry to read this. I also remembered Soulbee's "mercury repellent" thread. Godspeed.
posted by oldtimey at 9:00 PM on November 22, 2008


I am so very sorry to read this. The grief that suicide causes (I refer of course to her boyfriend, not her, I'm not assuming anything) is a terrible one. I wish solace and peace to her family and friends.

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posted by jokeefe at 9:01 PM on November 22, 2008


Also, just to note this:
Contributions in memorial may be made to Arts in Reach Program, P.O. Box 148, Dover, NH 03821-0148. Arts in Reach, "AIR" is a 501©3 organization that brings artistic forms of expression to at-risk young female adults on the New Hampshire Seacoast.
posted by jokeefe at 9:03 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by moonbird at 9:15 PM on November 22, 2008


In each of my friends there is something that only some other friend can fully bring out. By myself I am not large enough to call the whole man into activity; I want other lights than my own to show all his facets. Now that Charles is dead, I shall never again see Ronald’s reaction to a specifically Caroline joke. Far from having more of Ronald, having him “to myself” now that Charles is away, I have less of Ronald….In this, Friendship exhibits a glorious “nearness by resemblance” to heaven itself where the very multitude of the blessed (which no man can number) increases the fruition which each has of God. For every soul, seeing Him in her own way, doubtless communicates that unique vision to all the rest. That, says an old author, is why the Seraphim in Isaiah’s vision are crying “Holy, Holy, Holy” to one another (Isaiah 6:3). The more we thus share the Heavenly Bread between us, the more we shall all have.
– C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves

I miss you Lu. I've been crying all day, but I know you know that already. I feel you here with me now. But I still miss you.
posted by allkindsoftime at 9:20 PM on November 22, 2008 [24 favorites]


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posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:22 PM on November 22, 2008


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I'm sorry that you've lost a friend.
posted by jason's_planet at 9:25 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm sorry, today has been a harsh day for me on the internet. Another bright light has gone out.
posted by Grlnxtdr at 9:30 PM on November 22, 2008


I am so sorry. Twenty eight is just too young.

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posted by theiconoclast31 at 9:38 PM on November 22, 2008


Condolences to all involved. Sounds like she was burdened by pain and difficulties on all sides.
posted by deern the headlice at 9:56 PM on November 22, 2008


This makes me very sad. I am sending every good thought to her friends and family.
posted by ugf at 9:58 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so sorry. You, her family, and her other friends have my deepest condolences.
posted by cerebus19 at 10:04 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by heeeraldo at 10:16 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by onoclea at 10:16 PM on November 22, 2008


"We call that person who has lost his father, an orphan; and a widower that man who has lost his wife. But that man who has known the immense unhappiness of losing a friend, by what name do we call him? Here every language is silent and holds its peace in impotence." -- Joseph Roux

My condolences.
posted by aclevername at 10:22 PM on November 22, 2008 [30 favorites]


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posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:24 PM on November 22, 2008


This is really terrible.

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note: Everyone needs a hug.

Especially today, huh?
posted by schyler523 at 10:28 PM on November 22, 2008


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posted by Hildegarde at 10:38 PM on November 22, 2008


Soulbee knew a lot about grief and loss, more than many of us do. She talked quite candidly here and elsewhere about her own emotional reactions to the tragedies in her life. She was a smart woman, who valued honesty over platitudes and reverence. I do not believe that she would fault anyone for being graceless under the circumstances. Just as she understood loss, she also understood "trainwreck-gaping". It was one of the many ways in which she was charitable.

What she did ask for, specifically, was that we be kind to each other.


allkindsoftime, thank you for sharing this with us, and thank you for being a good friend to her.

Hugs, you all.

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posted by asspetunia at 10:56 PM on November 22, 2008 [4 favorites]


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posted by keijo at 10:59 PM on November 22, 2008


Crap, crap, crap.

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posted by orthogonality at 11:27 PM on November 22, 2008


This is unbearable, unsettling.

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posted by Rumple at 11:32 PM on November 22, 2008


I'm so very sorry to hear this, sorry I didn't know soulbee better, sorry that now I no longer have that chance. It's clear from her posts that she was a bright light... I wish her peace. And hugs to you allkindsoftime, and to her other friends here. Hugs to us all.
posted by taz at 12:14 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by juv3nal at 12:57 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by Coaticass at 1:12 AM on November 23, 2008


How terribly, terribly sad. My condolences to Lexi's family, friends and Metafilter family. I hope any pain she was experiencing is now well and truly over.
posted by taff at 1:16 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by trip and a half at 2:33 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by hydropsyche at 4:54 AM on November 23, 2008


So, so sorry for your loss, allkindsoftime - and everyone else who knew her. Lots and lots of love to... well, everybody.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:34 AM on November 23, 2008


28? ... Not cool, universe, not cool at all.

My condolences to you, allkindsoftime, and to anyone whose life she ever touched.
posted by pyrex at 6:03 AM on November 23, 2008


My heart goes out to you, allkindsoftime. Take care of yourself.

Farewell, Soulbee, and safe passage.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:10 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by otolith at 6:48 AM on November 23, 2008


Man, I remember the post about her boyfriend and her tattoo idea from when it was originally posted. Reading this post, I was hoping against hope that I was remembering the wrong Mefite, but... Poor Lexi. Wish I could have done something.
posted by lizzicide at 6:52 AM on November 23, 2008


Also reminds me that it's about time I stop using the awful username I thought up as an angsty 15-year-old. Anyone want to suggest a new one?
posted by lizzicide at 6:53 AM on November 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I am so very, very sorry.

(The poetry and quotations everyone has been posting are beautiful, by the way.)
posted by kalimac at 7:05 AM on November 23, 2008


Let's all of us just look after each other.
posted by By The Grace of God at 7:07 AM on November 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


Any death of a close friend or family member is difficult, but especially one so young. I lost my cousin at 29, and I am so very sorry for you. I remembered her last question, and though I did not have an answer for it, I hoped she would be alright.
posted by desjardins at 8:01 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by diggerroo at 8:01 AM on November 23, 2008


on preview, expanding on BTGOG's comment - let's go give the nearest person a hug. they just may need it.
posted by desjardins at 8:02 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by fourcheesemac at 8:09 AM on November 23, 2008


Also reminds me that it's about time I stop using the awful username I thought up as an angsty 15-year-old. Anyone want to suggest a new one?

lizzibirth
posted by odinsdream at 8:20 AM on November 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


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posted by cjorgensen at 8:43 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by jayder at 8:51 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by sveskemus at 9:12 AM on November 23, 2008


“Death shall have no dominion.

Dead men naked they shall be as one with the wind and the west moon
When their bones are picked clean and the clean bones gone they shall have stars at elbow and foot
Though they go mad they shall be sane
Though they sink through the sea they shall rise again
Though lovers be lost love shall not

And death shall have no dominion.


In Africa I experienced lots of dicey situations; Dylan Thomas helped me sort through the aftermath ...
posted by Mutant at 9:15 AM on November 23, 2008 [10 favorites]


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posted by evilcolonel at 9:28 AM on November 23, 2008


I am so sorry. 28 is far too young.
Rest in peace, Lexi.

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posted by porn in the woods at 9:30 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by mygothlaundry at 9:46 AM on November 23, 2008


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Thank you for alerting me to this thread. I am very sorry for your loss.
posted by sondrialiac at 9:47 AM on November 23, 2008


I knew her only through her questions, which showed me a strong, kind soul. I wish I'd had the opportunity to know her better.

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posted by Verdandi at 9:54 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by spinifex23 at 10:03 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by batmonkey at 10:11 AM on November 23, 2008


Our condolences to you, allkindsoftime, and to Lexi's family.


The Noble Nature

IT is not growing like a tree
In bulk, doth make man better be;
Or standing long an oak, three hundred year,
To fall a log at last, dry, bald, and sear:
A lily of a day
Is fairer far in May,
Although it fall and die that night,--
It was the plant and flower of Light.
In small proportions we just beauties see;
And in short measures life may perfect be.

Ben Jonson
posted by gudrun at 10:20 AM on November 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


Mollia non rigidus caespes tegat ossa, nec illi
terra grauis fueris: non fuit illa tibi

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posted by _dario at 10:41 AM on November 23, 2008


Very sad news.

I'm currently in the midst of a deep, deep depression of my own, which is making it difficult to process this. Reading this thread has left me trembling a bit. Christ.
posted by item at 10:45 AM on November 23, 2008


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posted by waraw at 10:49 AM on November 23, 2008


A hug for you, ((((Item)))).
posted by The Light Fantastic at 10:56 AM on November 23, 2008 [4 favorites]


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posted by Fuzzy Monster at 11:11 AM on November 23, 2008


My condolences to all.

Here is a poem that has given me comfort and solace while mourning the death of a friend.

Peace, my heart, let the time for the parting be sweet.
Let it not be a death but completeness.
Let love melt into memory and pain into songs.
Let the flight through the sky end in the folding of wings over the nest.
Let the last touch of your hand be gentle like the flower of the night.
Stand still, O Beautiful End, for a moment, and say your last words in silence.
I bow to you and hold up my lamp to light you on your way.


-Rabindranath Tagore, "The Gardener"
posted by velvet winter at 11:36 AM on November 23, 2008 [6 favorites]


What terrible news! I'm so sorry for your loss.

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posted by orrnyereg at 12:15 PM on November 23, 2008


I'm very sorry, allkindsoftime.
posted by amicamentis at 12:21 PM on November 23, 2008


allkindsoftime - I am so very sorry to read this. I remembering answering one of soulbee's Ask Mefi posts a couple of months ago when I really felt for her. I'm so sorry that she never got to feel the healing of her loss. I hope you have lots of good people around you xx
posted by highrise at 12:44 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by stray at 1:20 PM on November 23, 2008


allkindsoftime, and other friends of Soulbee, I'm sorry for your loss.
posted by andraste at 1:45 PM on November 23, 2008


so sad on so many levels. i hope she found peace.
posted by msconduct at 1:50 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by dreamyshade at 2:14 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by carmicha at 2:51 PM on November 23, 2008


I'm so sorry to hear this. We had a lovely MeFi mail exchange pertaining to an anonymous question she posted that she appreciated my answer to. She mentioned that she had a very good and experienced therapist, which I was grateful to hear. I wish it hadn't happened, but I hope her passing was a peaceful one.
posted by jasper411 at 3:00 PM on November 23, 2008


I'm so sorry. 28 is way too young to die and to have found so much heartache in this life.
posted by tkchrist at 3:40 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by squ1rr3l at 3:52 PM on November 23, 2008


Oh, Soulbee... goodbye. Your voice here, your intelligent compassion, will be missed. My thoughts are with your family and your friends today.
posted by Elsa at 4:14 PM on November 23, 2008


This is so sad, and I'm so, so sorry.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 5:29 PM on November 23, 2008


I'm 28 as well.

I wish I had known her... she sounds like such a wonderful person. I'm sorry. :(
posted by IndigoRain at 5:40 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by bettafish at 5:58 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by fizzix at 6:00 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by Unicorn on the cob at 6:56 PM on November 23, 2008


Piping in to pay my respects. I see I'm number 206. I hope she knew - or her family knows - that at least 200 people thought she was a wonderful voice in this community.

*sends bucketfuls of kind thoughts to the east coast, and everyone missing soulbee tonight*
posted by anitanita at 7:38 PM on November 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


How terrible. I'm so sorry.
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posted by Pastabagel at 8:10 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by spinturtle at 8:19 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by stagewhisper at 8:24 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by spec80 at 8:35 PM on November 23, 2008


My condolences to her family, friends, and anyone else who knew her.

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posted by Kadin2048 at 8:42 PM on November 23, 2008


Just reading this thread has affected me terribly.

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posted by adiabat at 9:07 PM on November 23, 2008


I first noticed Soulbee because over about a 6 month period she favorited 100 or so of my old AskMe answers. It was apparent that she was methodically going back and reading my old posts, one by one, and favoriting them occasionally. So I sent her a teasing MeMail about it, you know, "Hey, thanks for the favorites, hope you enjoyed the read." She sassed me back and that was that.

A couple weeks ago she MeMailed me again. She wanted to know how someone would die if they had doused themselves with gasoline and set themselves on fire, like her boyfriend did; what that experience of that death would be like. What a hard question. She was clearly not doing well. She told me that she had spent those six months reading those comments to find out if I was someone she could trust.

I told her what I could, made some suggestions (which she took me up on) on how to learn more, and asked occhiblu, my girlfriend, to email her. Occhiblu is currently working as a counselor for survivors of suicide, but as it happens she didn't get around to mailing her. She did contact a burn center, and a paramedic told her that her boyfriend's lungs had probably been destroyed and that he died because of this. The way she related this, it did not sound as though it had been communicated in a particularly empathetic way.

I feel like this right here is the sum of all my fears about participating in this community - someone misinterprets my presence here as an offer of help; asks for the help; and because of the way it is, interacting with someone over the Internet, I didn't recognize what I was being asked, or the severity of the issue, and so I didn't take enough care to ensure that she got the help she so obviously in retrospect needed.

Suicide is a funny thing. It's a personal choice made in the midst of unimaginable suffering. But it has this way of spreading the suffering around, so that now people are suffering who didn't even realize they were involved.

I'm suffering now. I'm sorry for Soulbee and her family and friends, and I'm sorry for all the rest of you reading this who are affected. And I'm going to try to have the courage to be sorry for myself, too. What she asked of me wasn't fair, even if she was too troubled to realize it.

Mourning her loss is not dependent on knowing the circumstances of her death

I think it's an error to try to pretend that it doesn't matter how Soulbee died. As someone whom she was begging for help two weeks ago, I have to say that it matters to me very much. I would hope that people would have the good sense to discuss that in ways that were appropriate to the awful situation.
posted by ikkyu2 at 9:24 PM on November 23, 2008 [83 favorites]


Also, if it's not obvious from the above, I am heartbroken. I had gone back and read some of her comments and posts - two can play at that game - and she was too good to end this way. It's fucking heartbreaking.
posted by ikkyu2 at 9:29 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by Crabby Appleton at 9:34 PM on November 23, 2008


ikkyu2: by "survivors of suicide" do you mean the surviving friends & relatives?
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:03 PM on November 23, 2008


Wishing peace for Lexi, and those whose lives she touched.
posted by lunaazul at 10:22 PM on November 23, 2008


ikkyu2, I am so sorry to read about how you're feeling right now. I hope you don't get caught up in an if only-if only whirlwind - If only you'd done X or realized Y. I'm sure you know better than I that it's a hard thing to accurately assess what's going on with someone, or how close they are to doing themselves or someone else harm. It sounds like you responded thoughtfully to her, and you can't be sure that if either you or your partner did or said anything else, it would have prevented her from harming herself (if that's what happened).

To repeat: the question is, did you do what you could based on the information you had - and it sounds like you did. It sounds like you were a person she thought well of, and who tried your best to respond to her. I imagine she appreciated being able to reach out to someone who answered her questions honestly and candidly. It also sounds like there were a lot of factors at play here so far, far beyond your control or even ability to influence. There is great sadness of her death, but I hope you don't feel that you did anything but all of the right things.

I think part of what makes suffering so, well, insufferable is that it is so hard to accept that sometimes doing even 'all of the right things' or 'taking care to do everything you can' isn't enough - to prevent someone you care about from experiencing pain or causing themselves harm. In the face of that it's easy to slam yourself to feel that you should have done more, or picked up on what was happening. But from her posts she seems to have had the biggest heart and I imagine it would make her sad to imagine that her friends or family are left feeling that should have 'done more'.

Take care of yourself.
posted by anitanita at 10:28 PM on November 23, 2008 [3 favorites]


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posted by Alterscape at 10:58 PM on November 23, 2008


by "survivors of suicide" do you mean the surviving friends & relatives?

Of course; who else survives a suicide?
posted by ikkyu2 at 10:59 PM on November 23, 2008


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posted by LobsterMitten at 11:01 PM on November 23, 2008


(ikkyu2, I think he meant people who attempt suicide but survive the attempt)
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:02 PM on November 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


...god, I walk back in from a weekend at a wedding and hanging out with a friend's toddler and... fuck.

Didn't know her. Read her last question and remembered what a bitch of a time I had on the same medication, didn't really have an answer, hoped someone else would be able to tell her what she needed to know.

I'm off to hold Mr. F a little tighter than usual tonight. Just, what the fuck.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 11:14 PM on November 23, 2008


I think it's an error to try to pretend that it doesn't matter how Soulbee died.

Oh, I didn't mean to pretend that it doesn't matter how she died -- I think it certainly matters, and I'm haunted by the terrible pain she was in, and so sorry to hear of the pain this has caused you, ikkyu. I meant to say that I thought bardic was incorrect in seemingly implying that mourning soulbee's death was conditional on knowing what caused it. Whether caused by a car accident or an aneurysm or her own hand, soulbee's loss would be worthy of our mourning.

It's the gap you can't see, and when the wind blows through it, it makes no sound. -- Tom Stoppard
posted by scody at 12:33 AM on November 24, 2008


(oh, and I was also trying to nudge the conversation away from asking allkindsoftime to reveal details that seemed to be private for a reason. It just seemed like that might have added to his pain, which I'm sure no one wanted to do.)
posted by scody at 12:50 AM on November 24, 2008


(yes, it's a freakishly ambiguous - if not outright contradictory - term)
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:53 AM on November 24, 2008


Dear allkindsoftime and iamkimiam I am so very sorry for your loss.

Looking at Soulbee's posting history here, her favorited posts/comments had a lot of focus on death, suicide, depression, antidepressants, self-mutilation, therapy, ODing, eating disorder issues, alcoholism. From her comments it was apparent she *really* was struggling for a long time with severe depression that was not helped sufficiently by being in therapy, seeing a psychiatrist, taking Lexapro and Welbutrin. She not only had issues, she was devastated by the violent suicide of her boyfriend, who must have himself had serious issues.

He is the second Buddhist I've heard of who committed suicide by self-immolation. Truly a nightmare.

Soulbee must have been haunted by the trauma of her ex's death. My neighbor died horribly by fire 20 years ago this week and that is, to this day, a source of deep sadness and disturbing memories. When a person has severe, long term depression issues, not helped by medications or therapy, there is no way to guarantee that life is navigable or bearable. David Foster Wallace couldn't do it, in spite of the very best and highly educated help he received.

I've talked briefly about the idea of starting Wellness Centers dealing with depression. It's something I wrote to Obama about as an idea, one of those visions questions and Google Idea Contest.

I don't know many people who haven't at one time thought of suicide, felt overwhelmed. Most people are able to get through those times. I did. A number of people I'm close with have attempted suicide. I have, several times before 21 and certainly thought about it during cancer treatment these last few years, especially when I thought I'd be homeless this year.

In the last 9 years I've been online I've been helped by and helped countless people like Soulbee, people in profound emotional pain who have joined online support groups. occhiblu and I recently discussed our very different approaches to grief therapy in MetaChat. I think the internet's online support groups have helped tens of millions of people, in spite of that help being an inexact science.

Dear ikkyu2, It hurts me to read the hurt in your comment. Just because you're a resident brainiac doesn't mean you can take away another person's overwhelming, chronic pain that they have been suffering a long time and I don't think anybody expects you to do that. I certainly do not think Soulbee expected that of you.

You said:
"I feel like this right here is the sum of all my fears about participating in this community - someone misinterprets my presence here as an offer of help; asks for the help; and because of the way it is, interacting with someone over the Internet, I didn't recognize what I was being asked, or the severity of the issue, and so I didn't take enough care to ensure that she got the help she so obviously in retrospect needed."

I truly don't think Soulbee misinterpreted your presence here as an offer of alleviating all the suffering of her life, which overwhelmed her.

You obviously take exquisite responsibility for your actions and words, weigh each syllable thoughtfully. I deeply respect that. However much one would like to control the outcome of one's actions or words it may not be possible to get the desired result in all circumstances. One of the many wonderful things about community information is that quite often it is a Gestalt, a mosaic, not a single answer that is The Answer. This is particularly true when it comes to things like depression.

I'm glad you reached out to Soulbee, expressed that you cared. Emotional and mental health are not something that can be calibrated in a laboratory and I don't think there was any specific thing that you or anybody could have said to Soulbee to save her. She was seeing a number of professionals for her condition. I believe that you said and did the very best under the circumstances.

I'm very sorry Soulbee died, that she wanted to die, that she suffered so dreadfully with chronic, intractable depression. She wanted to be free of the depression but couldn't find a way. Hopefully in the future there will be better ways to diagnose depression, better treatments, better chemicals, better information, better therapy. Her having chosen to commit suicide I honor as a choice she made for herself.

My sincere condolences to those who were close to her. May she rest in peace.
posted by nickyskye at 1:58 AM on November 24, 2008 [34 favorites]


I didn't take enough care to ensure that she got the help she so obviously in retrospect needed.

ikkyu2, honey, please listen - this is not your fault. Yes she reached out to you - she reached out to a lot of people, I imagine because she was seeking relief from her unbearable pain. There is no answer you could have given her that would have done that. That's just the truth.

And while yes, she needed help, she had help. She had both a therapist and a psychiatrist and she was in regular contact with both. She had friends - good friends - who were in touch with her. Sometimes all the help and all the love in the world is simply not enough
posted by DarlingBri at 3:10 AM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


ikkyu2, listen to me-there is absolutely no need for you to have regrets, or to second guess yourself, or any of that.

You did the right thing-you gave the information that was asked for.

Information does not kill anyone.

We still do not know for sure how soulbee left this earth. But even if we assume this was suicide, there is nothing that any of us-or any of her family or friends-could have done. This kind of pain does not listen to reason.

We do not have that kind of control over another human's life, or over another human's decisionmaking when it comes to selfharm.

All we can do is be compassionate and reach out as we can to those we see who are hurting. You did that, as did many here.

We did do what we could as a community. That is all we could have done.

Every doctor knows that no matter how hard he or she works, not every patient makes it.

All we can do now is continue to be compassionate to those who are still with us, in the hope that somehow, for them, it can be enough.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:26 AM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


I just want to add my two cents to ikkyu2: you did nothing wrong, it was good that she had you to talk to, and you couldn't have changed the outcome. I know it's impossible not to feel bad, but try to go easy on yourself.

And my condolences to everyone who knew Soulbee; she was obviously a good person walking a hard road.
posted by languagehat at 6:08 AM on November 24, 2008


My heartfelt condolences to everyone who knew and loved her. Just judging by how many times she e-mailed people to thank them for offering answers to her questions, she was a wonderful person.

My wife lost her sister in an accident in June '07, and then her step dad died from mesothelioma this July, so on a daily basis I see how utterly crushing it is to deal with the death of loved ones. Some days are better than others, but my wife absolutely cannot bear the pain on some days, or as she says, "I just don't know where to put it". Until recently she refused grief counseling, but she's finally ready to talk to someone who's trained to help in these terrible situations. I hope Lexi's friends and family do the same if or when they're ready. She really sounds like the kind of person whose loss leaves a big gaping hole in one's life.

In the meantime, my love and sympathy to everyone who is missing her.
posted by Devils Slide at 6:36 AM on November 24, 2008


I wish I had known her; I certainly missed out on a lovely person.

My condolences to her friends and family, and my thanks to the friends she found here who have helped her. I have no doubt she appreciated you all deeply.

To those who knew her, to those who did not know her but are shaken and saddened by this news, and to those who are sad today for their own unrelated reasons, you have a hug from me. This time of year can be so cold and dark and heavy for so many of us, and we all need all the love we can get.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:21 AM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


I donated in her memory to Arts in Reach, mentioned above, on behalf of MetaFilter. What a sad story all around.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:14 AM on November 24, 2008 [15 favorites]


*hugs Matt*
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:34 AM on November 24, 2008


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posted by Big_B at 8:41 AM on November 24, 2008


First I must ask - is it known that she committed suicide? In addition to her psychological struggles, Soulbee had medical problems. It seems like there's an assumption that's being made that because her posting history dealt with psychological issues that she suicided. It may be, but it's not obvious to me that that's what happened.

ikkyu2, Soulbee knew that I am a psychologist and when we corresponded about her anonymous post. I realize there's a burden connected to being a health professional on a web forum, but in this case, you may be reading too much into her correspondence with you and making assumptions about what she needed/wanted from you.

It's always tragic when someone so young dies, for whatever reason. And we're all always wondering if there's something we could have done to prevent the death. Soulbee made it clear to me that she had a good therapist who was experienced, who she trusted a lot, and who she was seeing regularly. In other words, she was receiving care and was in good hands. She had a caregiver right there in her community who was seeing to her needs. Be comforted - your compassion and concern and expertise are clear - but sometimes there's nothing *anyone* can do to prevent a death.
posted by jasper411 at 8:57 AM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Thank you all for your kind words. I know that rationally there was likely nothing I could have done differently, but the whole thing has left me deeply upset.
posted by ikkyu2 at 9:56 AM on November 24, 2008


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posted by owtytrof at 10:09 AM on November 24, 2008


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posted by svolix at 10:47 AM on November 24, 2008


Very sorry to hear this news and to read this thread. I hope Soulbee has some peace at last.
posted by stinkycheese at 11:02 AM on November 24, 2008


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posted by thejanna at 12:36 PM on November 24, 2008


Fuck depression.

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posted by deborah at 12:52 PM on November 24, 2008


This is horrible.

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posted by rollbiz at 1:55 PM on November 24, 2008


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posted by BrotherCaine at 2:16 PM on November 24, 2008


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posted by collocation at 2:55 PM on November 24, 2008


.

I'll remember her for her very thoughtful, valuable, and insightful answers on AskMe. Her passing is a terrible loss. My condolences to her family and friends.
posted by NikitaNikita at 4:07 PM on November 24, 2008


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yes- what NikitaNikita said.
posted by small_ruminant at 4:44 PM on November 24, 2008


Dear Lexi,

The memorial was "A Celebration of the Life of ACW." You were with us from July 16, 1980 to November 16, 2008 (our birthdays were close!). It was at the Aryaloka Buddhist Retreat Center tucked in the woods behind Newmarket. I wonder if you ever got there in life. It was bright and clear today and would have been perfect for a swim in the creek (it warmed up just enough).

It was beautiful. It was simple and there were flowers, very pretty ones, the type you would have been changing your lenses and clicking away at like you always did. They made everyone take their shoes off which I know was customary but also just kind of a nice difference. I signed the book with a "II" at the end of my name instead of the Jr., just to kind of keep things punchy.

I know you had a tough year and didn't feel like there was much community around you, but I wish you could have seen it today. The main room was packed 15 minutes before they were due to start. I mean every chair was taken and every spare spot on the floor had butt covering it. I was standing against the back wall and I had some girl I didn't know practically sitting on my feet the whole time. The hall behind the main room - same deal, packed to the gills, no room left. There were probably another 40-50 people in the back room but I couldn't move to see out that far. All I know is that when I left there were cars parked almost half a mile away.

I had to smile, I think you might have had something to do with the minister, after all our talks on religion - it was like a nice mix of both of our views. He called himself a "Taiwanese Buddhist Christian pastor to the entire Yankee nation." He pointed out that no one can escape birth, illness, suffering, and death. He said that you must have found a way to discover what the meaning of life is - I hope he was right. I think he was. He kept coming back to the great compassion for one another that we must have - that you had. You know that's my favorite part of Buddhism. Anyway. He actually said that Christianity and Buddhism do not conflict - I knew you were smiling then too. And he opened and closed with the traditional blessing of peace (you could tell which half of the room was the Catholic half).

I liked the second part the best though - people started sharing.

Your aunt talked about how your dad loved dancing with you at her wedding, when you pulled him out onto the dance floor - about how his face radiated. She told us how beautifully you played the piano. She cannot imagine a better role model for your cousins, she loved you so much for how you loved them. You hated scratchy clothes and chose to be inordinately kind.

Your sister "Hazybug" wanted to share only one thing with us - it was the time she was in Martha's Vineyard, and you called her to ask her to do one simple thing for you. You asked her to remember to do random acts of kindness every day for others.

Your masseuse and good friend shared how you admonished her about over-simplification of life (everyone laughed), and how you loved communing with the unknown. She asked us all to hold hands and then lead a prayer to the Violet somebody or something. I couldn't take a note because I was holding hands, sorry.

Rod's mom talked about when you were just 2 years old and you and him splashing each other at the pool and the joy you shrieked with. She carries that picture in her heart and always has. She talked about you as a teenager when you stayed on their boat with her when she had a headache and everyone else went out for the day. She still has the tiny fetish dolls you gave her, she keeps them on the boat. She loved how much you hurt for other peoples' pain. She told us about your poetry and what a brilliant artist you were. She loved how you celebrated differences and embraced common ground (I loved that too).

Jeff got up and talked about how you saw the world with your heart, how it wasn't in a safe box like most of ours keep our hearts, or behind a filter. He encouraged us to lose our filters and be more like you were. Then he showed us a photo-album of your work that he had arranged to that song you always blared when you drove up to his place. I was expecting Two Sheep Asleep but it was a Devotchka song I'm pretty sure. "How could something so pretty become such a mess?"

Your boss talked about the "change is constant" slogan you came up with and he's ran with. He said you were so successful because you cared so much - for your colleagues, for your prospects, for your clients. I didn't tell him how much time you actually spent on gmail.

Other friends talked. Then your family.

Your dad was blown away by how many people loved you. Your mom talked about loving someone around you while you can, because you never know when they'll be gone. Robbie pointed out that the last week was so tough but also so happy because everyone came together, he knew you would have loved that. Your grandfather talked about the framed photo you gave him and how he never realized before how accomplished of a photographer you were until he saw the album Jeff showed us.

And then the pastor closed with how you are still alive in our hearts. Its trite and I hate it and I keep looking for your dot to pop up on my gmail chat list and it never will again.

I talked to Robbie afterwards and told him about how we met, and how there would have been twice as many people there had this community been able to come as well. He was blessed to hear so many others were on the list of lives you touched.

And then I left and drove back trying to stay awake, trying to not cry, and thinking about what Haley said about the RAOK and how you'd want each and every one of us to do something nice for someone else every day, in your memory. So I started letting people squeeze in ahead of me when I hit traffic. It was weird, I'll be honest. I'm going to do my roommate's dishes for him too instead of bitching at him about them.

There's lots of recurring irony this past week, a lot of it dark, just like you liked it. I mean, the whole service today, for starters. And then there's how everyone wants to know the details of what happened when the last year and some weeks of your life was haunted by the same morbid public fascination with Nate's death (some things never change, I guess). And how so many of the people there who I'm sure you felt abandonment from walked out of there crying and wanting to love on other people because of you. There's lots of other things and I think you've been chuckling with me about them this week, in the in between times.

The world's a better place because you were here. Wherever you are now, I hope you found Nate again. I didn't fully realize until today how perfect you were for such an awesome man.

Love,
posted by allkindsoftime at 5:06 PM on November 24, 2008 [65 favorites]


Dear everyone,

Your outpouring of love and support in this thread, through MeMail, through email and IM has been overwhelming. I think it probably took this much loss to realize what that word - overwhelming - really means, but I am brought to tears by your kindness.

I'd like to encourage you all to consider doing something kind for someone. Donate to Arts in Reach, or a homeless shelter in your neighborhood. Volunteer somewhere. Pay for the person behind you at Starbucks. Let your kids stay up a little late for once. Shovel the neighbor's walk too. Doesn't matter what or how much or for whom. Just do something kind - do it for Lexi. This story doesn't get a happy ending, but I still think it can still be a good one. She would smile to think of hundreds of us doing something kind because of her. She'd be flattered.

I've made a CD of some of the songs that Lexi sent me on her last day with us. I've already offered (via MeMail) to send copies to some of you, which I will do. If anyone else would like a copy, please just send me a MeMail with your address.

I'd like to share a quick story about Lexi's deceased boyfriend Nate with you - in her words:

"you know. nate didn't have a car, and we live(d) in a very cold wintery place. his bike or his feet were his only transportation when i wasn't around, or he wasn't around me. anyway, at some point the winter before he died, someone stole his bike from outside the apartment he kept across the river for his jungle of plants to live in. and i was like furious. i was so angry that someone would steal his bike (this was in a way-out-of-the-way neighborhood in a pretty damn rich town) that someone would steal his bike from under his building's porch, and i was all "damn man go to the police, that was a nice bike," it had bike snow tires and everything. and he kept saying nah, nah, and i kept bugging him about it, and he finally told me he knew exactly who'd stolen his bike because he'd seen the kid riding it around. so i was like omg go kick his ass and get your bike back! and he said, no, i just figure next time i see him at the bar i'll buy him a beer, i think he probably needs one if he stole my bike, and he said this in all sincerity. so it became a sort of joke/saying amongst friends that "nate wants to buy you a beer even tho you stole his bike." he just couldn't get mad either."

Like I told Lexi, I wish I was more like Nate was, but I'm not yet. I have to rage a little against the dying of this light. ikkyu2 - I was taking that anger out on the pdoc and pharmacist. I'm sure they have very difficult jobs and are hard-working people who want to help their patients. It was wrong of me to say that and I wish I could take it back (for the record, nothing got printed or delivered). I'm sorry. I have the deepest respect for your work and hope you can somehow come out of this encouraged to continue to help those who you can, as best you can.

All the "."s, all the condolences, all the hugs, all the sorrys, all the curses, all the quotes. You people are incredible. Thank you so much.
posted by allkindsoftime at 5:10 PM on November 24, 2008 [10 favorites]


Thank you for sharing her service with us. I know you've had a long day, so get some rest.
posted by ColdChef at 5:27 PM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


.
posted by SpiffyRob at 5:35 PM on November 24, 2008


Thank you for taking the time to describe the service for those who weren't there, and please make sure you are taking care of yourself, too.
posted by Forktine at 5:53 PM on November 24, 2008


allkindsoftime: That was a very beautiful, very moving tribute. Thankyou for sharing it with us.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:03 PM on November 24, 2008


"I keep looking for your dot to pop up on my gmail chat list and it never will again."

Oh crap. I was doing OK until I read that, it really got to me for some reason. Waterworks. Thanks for sharing all of this with us - my boss's mother passed away last Sunday, and I ended up crying* at the showing, which I felt kind of guilty and silly about, since I didn't know her very well. After reading what people had to say about Soulbee, I was reminded that empathy and compassion are nothing to be ashamed of. Thanks.


* Main crying trigger : His father slipped an arm around my waist and asked me, "Help us keep an eye on him, would you? He internalizes too much."
posted by HopperFan at 6:14 PM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


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posted by Quietgal at 6:26 PM on November 24, 2008


Just do something kind - do it for Lexi. This story doesn't get a happy ending, but I still think it can still be a good one. She would smile to think of hundreds of us doing something kind because of her. She'd be flattered.

And so it begins...
posted by juliplease at 6:51 PM on November 24, 2008


Oh, gosh. I just found out about this.

I didn't know Soulbee really at all. She sent me a MeFi mail a little less than a month ago to thank me for something.

Condolences.
posted by zizzle at 7:16 PM on November 24, 2008


I didn't know Soulbee, but I recall reading her questions and hoping she'd be okay. I hope she has found peace.

allkindsoftime: That tribute was beautiful.


.
posted by null terminated at 8:07 PM on November 24, 2008


Shuffled up on my ipod whilst driving home tonight, just as I let someone merge in front of me (per allkindsoftime's example):

You are a comet, when you streak close by
The radios get weak
And all your teeth glow when you speak
Your language shocking, yes, but sweet

And now you buzz yourself to sleep
You're just a tired honey bee
Would you do this thing for me
Land softly, yeah
Land softly, yeah
Land softly

posted by scody at 8:12 PM on November 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Thank you, allkindsoftime. Several problems that had been poking at me just dissolved into so much nothingness after reading your tribute. All the energy I would have wasted there, I'll use for better things, and think of your friend as I do so. I'm sorry for your loss, and grateful that you've channeled your grief into something so life-affirming.
posted by donnagirl at 8:31 PM on November 24, 2008


allkindsoftime, Such a moving and beautiful description of the service, rich with caring and loving detail. It felt good to cry reading it. What an incredibly loving man you are. I'm so glad Soulbee knew you and that you knew her. I look forward to finding a random act of kindness to do in Soulbee's honor.
posted by nickyskye at 8:47 PM on November 24, 2008


allkindsoftime:

Thank you for taking the time to tell us/SoulBee about the service. I can picture it quite vividly. Vividly enough that it brought tears to my eyes.

Peace to you.
posted by aclevername at 9:01 PM on November 24, 2008


allkindsoftime, thank you for taking the time to tell us about the service. I was also moved to tears. I wish you all the best. I hope Lexi has found peace, wherever she may be now.
posted by jokeefe at 9:20 PM on November 24, 2008


It is times like this that this community shows the best of what this species can be.... there is hope, even in this kind of tragedy.....
posted by HuronBob at 9:35 PM on November 24, 2008


.
posted by exlotuseater at 11:35 PM on November 24, 2008


Aww, this is really sad. My thoughts are with her family.

.
posted by badmoonrising at 12:59 AM on November 25, 2008


Thank you allkindsoftime. Soulbee is missed. I wish her peace.
posted by saucysault at 1:11 AM on November 25, 2008


Random acts of kindness are a good thing. I do it as often as I possibly can. Now I'll also think of this lovely woman when I do it. I'm so sorry she couldn't find a way to keep going. I've been feeling very bad recently too and this thread made me very sad indeed, but now I'm starting to think of all the people that I could reach out to, if only I would. One fears being too much of a burden, sometimes, and so I can kinda understand not wanting to make others feel awful because you feel so awful and in the end just going with the numbing void. This thread has also been a good reminder that we should have faith in the willingness of those around us to be burdened, when the alternative is just so very, very sad.

. for you soulbee, and all who knew you.
posted by h00py at 1:56 AM on November 25, 2008 [3 favorites]


. and hugs to all :'(
posted by divabat at 3:28 AM on November 25, 2008


*sobbing*

May the love of her many friends grow outward to help others.
posted by michswiss at 3:58 AM on November 25, 2008


.
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:46 AM on November 25, 2008


Oh shit, I'm actually crying. Thank you, allkindsoftime.
posted by sveskemus at 5:28 AM on November 25, 2008


.
posted by min at 6:44 AM on November 25, 2008


"All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well".
-Julian of Norwich

.
posted by puddleglum at 9:06 AM on November 25, 2008 [1 favorite]


allkindsofme, that was absolutely beautiful. I am sitting at my desk and crying -- I can't believe I'm crying. I hope you found peace, Soulbee.

.
posted by tickingclock at 12:07 PM on November 25, 2008


oh my


.
posted by bilabial at 12:31 PM on November 25, 2008


May you be given calm and peace, and
may you no longer see through a glass darkly;

May you be given, in a blinding instant,
the realization we cannot know as mortals
of the inherent beauty in
all its myriad shapes, forms,
perspectives and glances
of the earth and its inhabitants;

May the citizens of the world
in unknowing chorus
guide you to your
home, among the stars.
posted by WCityMike at 12:51 PM on November 25, 2008 [8 favorites]


<3
posted by radioamy at 1:00 PM on November 25, 2008


After I read some of these threads, I had a sinking feeling and looked up her Ask Mefi history, and indeed, she was the person I had thought of. I had kind of felt good: she had favorited my answers and I thought I had maybe helped her out in an absolutely horrific situation. She sounded in the last post to that thread as if some things had opened in her life.

The husband of my cousin killed himself. My cousin's life went very, very askew after that. I wish he had stopped before doing the exhaust-pipe thing and thought about his beautiful children and his wife. I wish Soulbee's boyfriend had had a moment when he realized "Jesus, what is this going to do to Lexi?" and stopped. I wish Lexi had had a moment when she realized how this would hurt her family. I know that this is maybe too much to ask, this hope for a moment of realization, but nonetheless, I wish it had happened.

I still haven't figured out whether we're just electrical impulses zapping through a mass of neural tissue or whether there's truly a soul that continues to exist. But it would be nice to think of Soulbee seeing her boyfriend again. Kneeing him in the crotch for what he did to her by his death, mind you, but then being happily reunited.
posted by WCityMike at 1:20 PM on November 25, 2008 [2 favorites]


I didn't know her, I wish I had. That won't stop me from mourning her, though. She was a thoughtful and loving person, and the world is poorer in her absence.

.
posted by arcticwoman at 1:30 PM on November 25, 2008


.

Distressingly, I had gotten behind on keeping up with mefi. Just found this thread and realized that she had sent me a memail a few days before her death.

Rest in peace.
.
posted by yohko at 4:32 PM on November 25, 2008


Today I had to take care of some chores downtown in lower Manhattan, right around Ground Zero and was so aware of Soulbee all afternoon.

On the other hand, the newspaper front page with Obama, saying Change Has Arrived gave me such a rush of hope and wish that Soulbee had felt my endorphins, found the thoughts or neurochemistry that would have allowed her to keep on. People were so nice today. Every time I held a door for somebody or on the subway asking my neighbor to move over a little to let somebody sit down I thought of her and it feels good to remember her.
posted by nickyskye at 6:06 PM on November 25, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is terrible. I am so sorry.

*hugs to all*
posted by goshling at 7:04 PM on November 25, 2008


thanks allkindsoftime for that.
posted by Sailormom at 7:17 PM on November 25, 2008


Maybe my Google-Fu is failing me, but I think WCityMike wrote that. And it's beautiful.
posted by HopperFan at 8:25 PM on November 25, 2008 [1 favorite]


may her journey thrive.
posted by micawber at 9:53 PM on November 25, 2008


Truly inspiring. Thank you all.
posted by odinsdream at 10:44 PM on November 25, 2008


.
posted by macguffin at 11:30 PM on November 25, 2008


This is heartbreaking. I am speechless. Godspeed, Soulbee.
posted by granted at 1:35 AM on November 26, 2008


She will be missed. Her beautiful spirit was evident in everything she wrote.
Soulbee, may you be at peace.
posted by indienial at 3:11 AM on November 26, 2008


gulp
posted by telstar at 4:28 AM on November 26, 2008


t I think WCityMike wrote that. And it's beautiful.

Forgive me if I'm stating what's obvious, bust in case people didn't catch the reference in the poem (which is indeed lovely and moving), it comes from Paul's first letter to the Corinthians:
Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. 11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. 13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
posted by Miko at 12:54 PM on November 26, 2008


I knew the glass darkly part (thank you, CCD!), but it's nice to see it quoted in its entirety, anyway. :)
posted by HopperFan at 7:57 PM on November 26, 2008


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posted by papafrita at 1:42 PM on November 27, 2008


I've been away from metafilter for a while and just catching up now. I'm so sorry for your loss. This is absolutely tragic. Wow. I reached out to her in may after she posted about the loss of her boyfriend, after noticing through her history what a lousy year she had. I wished her the best for the coming year and felt so sad for what she had been through. I keep repeating the word tragic, but it is such a tragedy that this was the conclusion to all she'd been through.
posted by necessitas at 12:26 PM on December 16, 2008


.

:-(
posted by -t at 2:37 PM on December 17, 2008


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