Saturday, March 21, 2009

Natasha Richardson


Truly tragic, and we all know about it because she was 1) a celebrity in her own right, 2) married to a celeb, Liam Neeson and, 3) comes from a celebrity family, the Redgraves. And I'm not going to digress about the word "celebrity" here, but it's an interesting word.

I'm inordinately fascinated by causes of death, and this one is no exception. She had an epidural bleed, a medical/surgical emergency, allegedly from a small fall on a bunny slope (and you do wonder how small that fall really was). Then a fatal comedy of errors, blowing off paramedics, a delay to get to a medical center, in hindsight, so many shoulda this, shoulda thats, with the result that a healthy, vibrant mother, wife, daughter, actress is now dead, no re-dos. That she's a celebrity brings it all into world focus, the uber fragility of life, the nothingness of our individual existences, and yet, the everything factor of them.

She was a perfect candidate to be an organ donor, but nothing was said about that. I would think the family was approached; it's kind of a hospital's mandate to approach a family in these circumstances to donate much needed organs, and maybe the hospital staff did and maybe Natasha's family agreed, understandably electing to not publicize this to avoid the media frenzy that would carry over to the recipient. I hope her organs were harvested because I know some non-celeb person somewhere is dying for her heart, her lungs, her liver, a kidney.

If you're an atheist, in my opinion, this kind of stuff makes life even more precious, cuz baby, this is it, one fast whirl on the planet, liable to go up in a puff of nowhere fast. I'm gonna take this tragedy and do something fun because of it, something rewarding, decadent, something life-affirming. I'm gonna take a moment or ten and think of how lucky I am at this moment in time to not have anything greater than a stinking economic crisis to worry about. I'm going to see the tax man today, get that out of the way, and then go see my best pals at the beach (with the BF at my side, natch), observe the earth (it might rain in L.A. today, woo hoo!), drink champagne and toast to life. Natasha, I promise a sad-but-somehow-merry libation to you.

5 comments:

Tim Jones-Yelvington said...

this one really got to me for some reason.

maybe because I ski... and have numerous friends and family who ski.

Alicia said...

I know! I ski too, and how many times have I nearly knocked myself out, falling down hard. I tore my ACL years ago, and my knee reminds me of that every day. It was a horrible, freaky accident, and a reminder of the every-moment-is-precious-aspect of life.

Hey, thanks for stopping by!

The Writer's Spark said...

i'll never get over this. This broke my damn heart. I love her. Always have.

The Writer's Spark said...

oh sorry, don't know if you can tell this is meg

Alicia said...

Hi Meg, thanks so much for stopping by. Yes, this was really hard, showing, as it did, the tenuous hold we have on everything. A huge loss.

I heard in ensuing media reports that she was an organ donor. Organ donors result from sudden cerebral trauma, and the harvest has to be soon after. It's so hard. The family has to decide at the height of loss and devastation to make this decision. But it's a life-giving decision, and one to be lauded loudly and clearly. Bravo to the family. And rest in peace Natasha.