For about the last year, I've been following the blog of a person I only really know as AlabamaPink. A commenter at another website I visit, I started following her blog when she was diagnosed with leukaemia.
About half an hour ago, I discovered she lost her fight. And I find I don't know what to feel. I never actually met this person, and unlike other people I have met online, I've never had a conversation with her, or exchanged emails. We weren't friends on Facebook. She quite probably didn't even know I existed, although I commented a few times on her blog.
Yet I feel utterly devastated.
Maybe it's because I know she leaves behind a three year old boy. Maybe it's just because she was so determined in her fight that I never thought she would succumb to the disease. Maybe it's the harsh reminder that for every glamourous celebrity we see on the news, with a fabulous wig and perfect teeth saying 'ooh look at me, I survived cancer, aren't I great?' there are people who suffer and die and we forget that.
Rest in Peace, AlabamaPink.