In early January, I encountered her picture on the Netscape front page. I tried to go to bed, but couldn't go to sleep. I got up and brought up the text. She was staying at a hotel where her niece was taking part in her first production. Every day, she took the sheets out of the maid's hands, and passed back the dirty linen. Much later, she revealed that she was expanding her personality in order to reach me.
At the Academy Awards in 2002, she showed up as the Bride of Frankenstein. I had to laugh, but clipped the inside picture out of the LA Times Calendar section. She looked straight ahead, hand holding an imaginary flip-phone to her ear: "Call me." Call you how? A colleague was passed the gift that year, but couldn't contain it.
Her male relationship at the time was involved in a personal crisis similar to mine. They were called "America's Sweethearts". After watching the movie, I learn that she had a sister. Who was I intended to join? Was it a bait-and-switch?
No. She wants me.
Shortly afterwards, a co-star on set was interviewed and remarked upon her new-found maturity. He said that she had lightened up, and would collapse in a laughing gaggle with her female friends. The article also remarked on her passion for knitting, and the gifts she made of her work to people on the set.
One night, I become very, very angry with one of the antagonists in my personal crisis. I bore down on him. Take my children from me? I'll kill you first! His heart beat wildly, and then a shift occurred. Still panic, but the feeling is different. No ill will on the other side. I paused. Calm down, calm down. Stay with me. Relax. And then suddenly the connection broke. Two days later, a story in the paper: she had suffered a severe episode of heart arrhythmia. A doctor was rushed to her house, and administered a relaxant to stabilize her condition.