Death · Trauma · Wendy

Dear Wendy—October 28, 2023

Dear Wendy,

I don’t know how it’s possible, but this is the year you’ve been gone longer than you were here. I’m bad at math already, but 23 years without you makes no fucking sense to me. But here I am, 276 months later, with you only in spirit. Jesus, woman, I miss your hugs so much. The injustice of it. Such bullshit, dude.

This hasn’t been an easy year. But some amazing things happened that would make you so happy. I finally met Keanu Reeves! No, I didn’t smooch him like you would have wanted. But I made him laugh so hard he doubled over. I think that’s way better. AND I finished my book about him! With every obstacle in my path, I did it Wendy-bird! Thank you for visiting me at Dogstar’s show. It was amazing to feel your hand in mine again. Even just for those brief moments. I’ll never forget.

Last year was the first year I reveled in my memories of you alive, instead of being so broken by the night that bitch took you away. And this year was no different. Like, imagine my surprise when I was rewatching Pretty Woman for the first time in years and Vivian drives by the Buffalo Exchange on Melrose where we got the matching velvet curtain coats! It made me so happy to see that storefront. Omg remember us rocking those everywhere we went?! People thought we were in a girlband and we talked about starting one. Maybe I’ll still do that one day for you. For us.

The other thing I’ve been doing this year is imagining you in places you might have been. Like, I’m 100 million zillion percent sure you would have been one of the guest makeover queens on Drag Race. No doubt. I also think you would have been an extra or even a whole damn character on Our Flag Means Death. I can almost see you there already if I look really hard. And I also think you’d somehow be besties with Mike Flanagan and his wife, working on their shows either behind the scenes or on camera. I even think you would have learned puppeteering so you could be one of Chucky’s handlers on the new show.

On the one hand it makes me giggle to think about all these places where I feel your presence. On the other, like right now on the memorial of the day you were stolen, it makes your absence even more of a void on the planet. Sigh.

Yet. Somehow, in spite of continuing adversity and my hand problems on top of it all, my career is really starting to take off. I have SIX books in process, Wendy! One is already provisionally accepted. Two of them are novels Im totally going to be able to sell. My next goal is getting an agent and I have the perfect book for that too.

I’ve reclaimed my name this year too, and I know you’d approve of Sezin Devi. Remember when you borrowed my book about the Bandit Queen after I told you about Phoolan Devi? If you were here you’d take my author picture and style me like a multiarmed goddess.

Oh and I almost forgot! Wendy, I WATCHED HORROR MOVIES THIS OCTOBER! It’s the first time since you were taken I’ve been able to do this! I was even writing horror movie microreviews almost every day this month! Today I’m watching Rock and Roll High School and BUFFY the show. Remember how you introduced me to The Ramones through that movie? And how my ending to American Monsters was inspired by the end? And Buffy. All those Buffy nights at your house! You introduced me to that show too. So many great memories with you, babes.

Don’t get me wrong: I’ve healed, but there is still an active lava of rage running through me. Toward that bitch who took you from us. Toward the people who told me “things happen for a reason.” And all the people who took advantage of me when I was still vibrating from the horror of the night you were killed. I have Ryan Gosling kicks stored in my legs for all of them. I always will. But I’m a lot more than just my fury and sadness now, and that’s exactly what you would have wanted.

More than anything, I miss you. I miss your hugs. I miss your silly riverdance. I miss our heart-to-hearts. I even miss our fights. I’d give anything to have an argument with you. It would mean you’re still here. We would work it out like we always did. You taught me to fight for the people I love, even when it might be uncomfortable.

My outfit today is for a funeral in Wakanda. Exactly the kind of funeral look you would love. Hug River for me, will you? And Brenda and Reid. The world might keep turning but it’ll never be as good as it was with y’all in it. Love you forever, Wendy-bird.