Since I started writing (or at least trying to write) this article in an effort to get my nerve back with posting and reporting again, my family and I were close to a week since the death of my sister, Dr. Isis Lee-Marie Golden. She was an inspiration to many people in her life who were fortunate to know her – of course, none more fortunate than myself, my mother and father, for whom she was the absolute pride and joy.
My sister, who died at her residency on the morning of April 7 in Lansing, Michigan, has to be the darkest chapter we’ve ever faced, and we’ve had some pretty damn dark ones. While her death wasn’t the only personal tragedy I’ve had to live with, because until last week, we were four. And now, we are three. My emotions were in a constant state of flux, and because I landed myself in a fever the following Sunday evening, my mood dynamics often aimed for the bushes.
I was high… I was low… I was giddy one moment and the next, I was cry-counting. Late night Lo-Fi piano jazz and supportive messages from friends within my circle and my sister’s, as well as the concern and care shown from some of my extended family, were a lot of help most nights. It kept me in tune with the importance of my own self-care, and connecting with my feelings as a means of healing, and I’d like to think it helped me recover from my fever a bit faster.
Moreover, the past week-and-a-half proved to be a unique time, in my view, for me, who now stands as the only surviving sibling of my parents. I consider myself blessed that we’ve managed to come this far and push past the pain as much and as hard as we did, as terrible and mortifying as it was to endure, and to keep enduring, and I sincerely hope my family and I will remain steadfast and forward in our endurance for many years to come.
As for me, part of me feels ready to get back on this platform and do what I enjoy doing. I missed covering the successful confirmation of Warrior: Season 3 for HBO Max, as well as trailers for Cliff Walkers and Sheep Without A Shepherd, and all the other PR tidbits I wanted to help get a handle on, and for all that and more, none of it would’ve gotten up at all, if ever, were it not for the handful of people whose names you can see in the bylines in the articles of this front page as we speak. Some of them have been here longer than the others, and we are still vetting, but if it’s one thing these people – Christina O. Phillips, Cathy K. LaFrance, Matt Essary, Vance Ang, Brandon Streussnig, and Kyle Wong, and the incredible and inevitable Eileen Cruz understand, is that what we do takes heart. And this bunch has more than most.
With that off my chest, indeed the events of this month have indefinitely shelved The Hit List, and so I will try and find a new way to keep covering film and TV, while continuing to shine a light on stunt performers and independent shortform filmmakers with an eye for action (something I have worked hard to do since late 2012).
This is all aimed toward getting me back into the rhythm of being a reporter and enjoying the escapism the work often brings, but one thing is clear out of all this: This is not something I’m going to rush. This has been a VERY difficult time for me, almost as much as it’s been a teachable one.
I won’t forget those of you who saw my posts and either reacted, commented, or even messaged or called me in the last ten days. It means a lot to me, and it’s taught me a little more about life in a filter I’ve never had to look through until now. It is…a million things. Opportune being one of them.
Give me time, I promise I will keep giving you my best.
P.S. Our condolences here at Film Combat Syndicate go out to the family, friends and loved ones of Max Repossi, a burgeoning action talent and screenfighting wunderkind who sadly passed away from a heart attack at his home gym on Wednesday. I found out the update through a press group affiliated with the UK-based Fighting Spirit Film Festival – to whom he was a friend and a recurring talent and guest. It was just this past Monday when Max privately contacted me to send his condolences for my late sister. I didn’t know him very well, but we always got along, and I proudly share every word of praise being circulated about him. And I will truly, truly miss him.
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.