In this essay, I explore how my friendship with the writer Maggie Nelson helped to sustain me in the two years immediately following a catastrophic accident that paralyzed me. In the years since, she has continued to help me reckon with profound loss, as her writing assures me that it is possible to represent both what has been lost and what remains. Odd as it may seem, of her many books, Jane: A Murder is the greatest comfort to me in its stark confrontation with irreparable loss and ongoing grief. Jane was her mother’s sister, killed before Maggie was born.
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