A trailer for a documentary called “Dreams of a Life” as been making the rounds among my artsy friends on Facebook. I was fascinated. I was haunted. The story just wouldn’t let me go.
A beautiful, young woman in the UK died, had been dead for three years in her apartment and no one knew. Eventually, she was found, horribly decomposed on her couch with the television still on.
As the story unfolds, you find out she was an amazing girl, with a lot to offer. She was talented, and had social-climbing talents akin to Rebecca Sharp from the classic novel Vanity Fair.The unfortunate part is the fact that everyone interviewed thought she lived this fabulous life from the outside. Meanwhile, inside, something else was going on. What it is remains a mystery and appears to be up for debate.
This holiday and beyond, I’m making it my business to do a better job of reaching out to loved ones, even if it’s just to say hello for five minutes. I do think if anything happened to me, folks would call out the search teams in a decent amount of time, but this movie is a sober reminder of how isolated we can all be from even our own friends and family in a modern world. It doesn’t take much to just check on someone every now and then. You don’t realize how much you could be helping them.
I know this all too well from the last year I had. Even when I wanted to be completely alone for several weeks at a time, there were people in my life who wouldn’t let me and they’d call and they’d come and check on me. I’m quite thankful for that. May Joyce Vincent rest in peace. May we all learn from her tragic story.