My 33-year-old son, Colby, called me last night to tell me Nora Ephron had died. He went to grade school with Nora’s son but that’s not why he related to her. “She did so much for women,” Colby wisely said.
When a 71-year-old woman makes such an impression on a young man like my son, that’s pretty impressive.
Nora was nothing short of impressive. Who but a creative genius could conceive, write and direct movies like When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle, no less a book called I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman to reflect on aging and one called Heartburn, following the devastating breakup of her marriage after her famous husband, Watergate journalist, Carl Bernstein, cheated on her. When other women would become embittered by a cheating spouse they loved, Nora parlayed it into her success. She gave funny, heartfelt, insightful voice to the things all women think about and experience all throughout their lives. Didn’t we all double over with knowing laughter during the Meg Ryan orgasm scene, while our boyfriends and husbands sat stunningly silent?
Nora seemed to have an exciting, fun-filled life following her divorce: Great success, happy marriage to another successful writer, nonstop socializing with celebs, house in the Hamptons, and on and on. And when she took ill, she didn’t announce it from the mountaintop. I assume she wanted to continue to be recognized for what she brought to the world, not for what was forcing her to leave it.
When I heard some of her famous friends talk about her on TV this morning, it was clear that she was deeply loved by those she blessed with her own love and devotion, not to mention her superb cooking and non-stop opinions (“You will not breast feed,” she told writer Sally Quinn, for example.) When one pal heard that Nora wouldn’t be coming out to the Hamptons one summer, she was distraught. “I knew the summer wouldn’t be the same.”
Nope. It won’t be the same without Nora Ephron. But it certainly was better with her.
0 Responses to “She opened the windows…of our souls”
Beth Surdut, Visual Storyteller says:
Someone recently asked what I would want for an epitaph. I think I found it in the NYTimes article about Nora Ephron where Meryl Streep says, “She was an expert in all the departments of living well.”
Blue Bear says:
Ms. Ephron never wrote an essay I didn’t read! She took the concerns of aging women and turned them into hilarious words we couldn’t help but laugh at. As she aged, she took us along for the ride and I, for one, will always be grateful for her humorous approach. She had her trials in life, just like the rest of us, but she dealt with them head-on and still kept her sense of humor. There was always a great deal to learn from her and she took me to school in many ways. Rest in peace, dear Nora. Your is one life that will be sorely missed!
ZB WonderWoman says:
Nora honey, it’ll be hard to see Meg Ryan without you’re carefully scripted words issuing forth. Darlin’–You’ve Got Mail!