I'm sure Best Beloved thinks I'm absolutely mad.
He padded off to cook breakfast this morning, leaving me with the glad-wrapped Canberra Times that had been brought in wet from the garden (RAIN! perfect day, time to eat brekkie in bed with the paper to the sound of raindrops). He came back with a cuppa to find me sobbing over the paper. His alarm turned to bemused confusion when I told him that Belinda Emmett had died yesterday.
He has no idea who or what Belinda was, and to be perfectly honest, I don't really have much of an idea either. I watch very little commercial tv, and I've never sat through any of her shows. I've never watched more than ten minutes at any time of Rove's show either. BUT for years now I've been getting mercy parcels of Woman's Day from my nana every few months, which I read from beginning to end, chortling at the Real-Life dramas, sneering at the breast implants and marvelling at the fact that anyone would take those psychics seriously (a green face! WTF!).
So I've been quietly following Belinda's life for years, initially as Australia's soapie darling, then her first seemingly triumphant struggle with cancer, and then her more recent descent into the pit. And I've been so impressed with her attitude, her good humour and her dignity. She constantly struck me as a very strong, positive and admirable person. I didn't think about her a lot, just a small mental 'good on you, girl' whenever I saw her picture and read another good thing about her. I don't think I've ever read anything snide or catty about her anywhere, and that in itself is a remarkable thing for the Australian media.
The headline in the paper this morning was low-key and respectful. So I shed some tears for her. She was 32; the whole story appeals to my tragic romantic fairytale leanings. I know this sounds corny, but I'm impressed with Belinda Emmett. I admire the way she and Rove fully embraced the fact that she was going to die, and made time in their lives for each other and the things they wanted. I sincerely wish Rove the best in the future. Unfortunately I'm sure I'll be reading all about his struggles with grief in the next few years, thanks to Woman's Day and various other sources.
Now you all probably think I'm mad too.