Posted Wednesday, December 28, 2016.
To those using the occasion of Carrie Fisher’s death to sermonize on the evils of drug abuse and lecture superciliously and sanctimoniously on how she brought it on herself while congratulating yourselves on how superior you are in terms of willpower and self-restraint:
Yes, she was an addict. She was also an ex-addict. She cleaned up. That takes guts, will, fortitude, strength, and courage. And, yes, maybe it did do damage to her heart. But here’s the thing. That may not be what caused her heart to give out. Hearts do that, even the seemingly healthiest ones. Our bodies are fragile things. The strongest, toughest body is as nothing to an oncoming truck, the chance infection, or an unlucky combination of genes.
And know what?
It will happen to you.
At some point your body will fail you. We’re all only temporarily healthy, temporarily fit, temporarily able and strong.
Know what else?
You’re going to die.
Probably in a humiliating and pain-filled way.
It happens to all of us. It’s where we’re all headed. We’re all fellow passengers to the grave, and we should treat each other accordingly. It’s still the Christmas season. It’s as Scrooge’s nephew Fred says:
“I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round, as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys.”
She’s gone. She didn’t want to go. She’d still be here if she could have helped it. She was loved. She will be missed. She had a family. They want her back. Think of them. Think of your own.Take care of them. Take care of your fellow passengers, while you can, because we vanish like a breath, and it’ll all be over too soon.