While in my sophomore year of college, I binged compulsively around the clock, gaining 80 pounds in six months. I never slept – I just ate. I hated myself and every bone in my body. I hated life and finally, absolutely miserable, dropped out of school. And as much as I despised the home I grew up in, I felt so defeated I crawled back there, miserably.
I had a classmate that sophomore year who embodied everything I wanted to be – Elizabeth Morris was smart, interesting, open-minded, beloved and beautiful. She seemed to have the perfect, loving nuclear family. If you’d asked me who I wanted to be (certainly not myself!), without pause, I would have quickly and easily answered, “Elizabeth Morris.”
Elizabeth killed herself that summer, after apparently attempting suicide three previous times.
It astonished me that I, who felt I had and was nothing, still had the strong will to live and she, who looked to have everything, lived in so much pain she chose death.
I prayed then, and do to this day, that Elizabeth Morris finally knows peace, wherever she is.
Today, the great designer Kate Spade apparently committed suicide, leaving behind a husband of many years and a 13 year old daughter. I can’t imagine what pain she knew that lead her to that end.
I’d always actually envied Kate Spade. She’s a few month older than I, and I often compared my meager life to her ‘fabulous’ existence.
Kate Spade was so successful (her company sold for 175 million dollars! in 2007); she had a long marriage; she was soo cool and creative and interesting and seminal – who didn’t have a Kate Spade bag or at least a knockoff? Here I was a single, college dropout, struggling financially and working odd jobs. Life would grand, I assumed, if I were Kate Spade.
And, of course, Kate Spade was skinny. Back when I weighed 230 pounds and was the least cool person that ever existed, I knew for sure that Kate Spade had it all. What a life.
Apparently, I was wrong. I’m still here, living life and full of hope. She’s gone.
I pray for young Frances Beatrix Spade. And may the great Kate rest in peace.