The Trouble With People
(Original published Oct 2010) Lessons learned.
Years ago I met a gal online who called herself Sara. She was really sweet and was one of the first to talk to me on that social networking site I used to play on. Sara said she was a bartender, living in a country far away from mine, with her girlfriend, Belle.
Over the next years we stayed in touch through email. I always bugged her to get on MSN with me, or even Skype, so we could talk properly, but she always declined, giving one reason or another…she hadn’t downloaded it, was having trouble with her computer…things like that. I never thought to disbelieve her, I just assumed that she didn’t like instant messaging.
Sara and Belle decided that, since they were so in love, they were going to have a baby. Belle donated her ovum and they chose a donor father together and Sara carried the baby..it seemed a lovely trade off. She didn’t tell me much about this as it was being planned, but said she wanted it to be a surprise to everyone she loved. I cried when she told me over email.
After a few months of pregnancy and lots of baby talk, Sara suddenly vanished from my life for a couple of weeks. I didn’t worry too much about her, knowing she would contact me if something had gone wrong and if she couldn’t, Belle would get in touch with me. Days went by until finally, in response to my flurry of questioning email, I received an email from Sara’s address, only, it wasn’t from Sara, it was from Belle. She told me that Sara had been in a very bad car accident (drunk driver) and had been injured badly, in fact, she had not recovered consciousness from the time of the accident. I cried so hard as I asked about the baby…hoping. In her following email, Belle told me that the babe was perfectly fine, thankfully. I was devastated not to be able to help her! Help them! I wanted to go and take care of Belle, then run off to the hospital to spend the night by Sara’s bedside…just to make sure she wasn’t alone. Belle assured me that it was all well in hand and promised to send my hugs and love to Sara the moment she opened her eyes, which we mutually promised would happen someday soon.
Sara pulled through and was put on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. When the baby was born, I got a midnight email letting me know. It was a beautiful girl, dark hair and eyes like her mum, I was told. Sara was overwhelmed with happiness. I ran out and bought the new little angel a teddy bear from Canada 🙂 (maple leaf sweater on him, how cute is that?!) and I begged her for an address to mail it to. She had me send it to her workplace, saying that Belle didn’t feel safe giving out their address (some trouble with a past relationship). I sent the teddy bear and then lost contact with her for a while as I went through my own stuff.
About a year had passed when I found her on that site again, quite by accident. I was overjoyed to see her again and I covered her “profile page” with messages and hugs…so excited to have found her. I asked about the girls and got a glowing report of what a ‘little monster’ the wee one was and how wonderful Belle was as a mom.
Days later I popped by her page again to see if she had been online and found a distressing message typed into her header. It told her online friends that she was feeling ‘extremely devastated’ because her “baby girl is so sick!” I panicked for a second…thinking the worst, and sent her an email and a private message on the site, begging her to tell me what had happened…what was wrong with her babe.
She told me had cancer, the poor tiny soul, and both mums were beside themselves with panic and fear. Coming from a medical world, I offered anything I could do to help…ask for second opinions on tests, look into research studies…anything I could do. I wrote Sara every single day…just a short note to let her know I was thinking of her and not to worry about writing me back. She thanked me in her short replies, for being there for her. Months, this went on, and I kept her in my heart always.
She sent me the note through the social networking site when her little one died. She said she had just finished informing her family and thought she would let me know as well. I closed my office door and cried, again, for a long time. It was awful…the thought of such a young child being lost to such a horrible disease, and the thought that someone I cared for suffering beyond belief.
Nothing even struck me as odd. Not throughout the entire three years I knew her. Then today, I was going through my old email contacts and deleting them, when I came upon Belle’s email addy from long ago. Something in the words she used gave me a clue to her last name (I knew her first name) and I thought,
“Huh. Would be interesting to see if Belle is a TV personality like she said. I wonder if she’s taken time off work to grieve”
…and ran a google search.
There is indeed, a TV actress that shares her entire name with Sara’s girlfriend. She’s exactly the right age with the same birth date. She lived in the same town as Sara’s girlfriend did, at the same time.
This TV actress has a five-year old daughter named Belle (pause) and has been married to a male producer of some sort since 2009. Her fan page has a picture from her wedding as the background image and her latest *tweet* mentions both her hubby and their little girl. (They currently live on the opposite side of the world from where Sara tells me she is now.) She is well known and liked as an actress in the country she is from, particularly for her role in a recent dramatic series where she starred as a lesbian who decides to have a baby with her TV girlfriend….I don’t know if either of them ever fell into a coma, but I wouldn’t be surprised to find that particular trauma outlined somewhere in the plot. This actress, last year, had a family member die, tragically, from cancer….
(I feel like a terrible person for doubting her for one second…then…)
WTF is up with this? What the HELL is wrong with people???? She lied to me about her entire life? About being in a coma? About having a child with cancer??? Why would she do that? I mean, okay, lie to me…carry it on for a whole month if you want but three years?? For crying out loud….is that even possible?
I can’t believe how long I spent, how much energy I invested, or how much I hurt for this woman (if she even IS a woman!).
I am, quite seriously, running out of patience for people.