I feel like my heart is being squeezed.
I am feeling a lot of things.
/I feel like Stéphane, snuggled on the mattress, holding Stéphanie’s hand, quietly drifting into lucid dreaming world, in Science of Sleep.
/I feel like Theodore, sitting in bed, half-clad in pyjamas, playing The Moon Song on the Ukelele, singing a duet with Samantha, in Her.
/I feel like Joel, laying on the ice, staring into Clementine, tearing from his eyes, relishing in her glow, before they part once more, in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Continue reading Housekeeping transient intimacies.
This year, I used email auto-replies for the first time.
What you read:
“Hi, Thank you for your email. Both my office PC and my personal laptop have crashed over the weekend. I am currently organizing a replacement device while attempting to recover my data and work from my iPhone. Kindly excuse delays in our correspondence. I will respond at my soonest convenience. Thank you.”
What I mean: Continue reading Auto-replies: What you read vs. What I mean
Between January and February this year, I ate Japanese food for 35 consecutive days in Singapore. Using food, place, and other materialities as placeholders for my sister, I was trying to reprogramme my body out of grief. Continue reading Reprogramming my body out of grief.
Today, I am 28 years 7 months and 23 days old.
Today, my sister would have been 23 years 10 months and 23 days old.
Instead, she will always be 23 years 5 months and 5 days old.
Tonight, at a party, I met someone from my sister’s universe.
When a mutual friend interrupted our conversation, I introduced him as some one who had taught my sister, as some one who had known my sister. Some one else who overheard us asked how old my sister is; I said she would have been 24 this year.
And then I felt so ashamed of myself.
* Continue reading Grammar.
Where do young people go to when they grief? Do they cry alone in their bedrooms? Do they logon to the internet? How do young people in grief find each other? Do they phone a friend? Do they enter a counselling centre? Do they search through hashtags and websites?
Death has never been more public than in the age of the internet. Alongside waves of #RIP[insertcelebrity] tributes and #[nameofvictim] police shooting activism proliferating on social media are viral posts of everyday people approaching grief and documenting their experience on the internet: recounting a person’s final days, parting words and gratitude from the deathbed, captures of assisted suicide and “right to die parties”, and families commemorating the deceased.
These experiences of death and loss have been augmented and prolonged with the growth of social media use. More specifically, the ways in which a social media platform is structured and the dominant culture of its users has allowed people in grief to process their loss in innovative ways – new spaces of affect are created, new paralanguage vocabularies are innovated, and new transient networks of care are formulated.
Continue reading Young People and Grief in Digital Spaces