Dear Judy Garland,
As I listen to one of the many albums you released after the better part of your film career was over, I just can't help but think about your life. I'm so sorry that your life wasn't what you wanted it to be. I'm sorry that your mother was the ultimate stage mother, allowing her greed for your money to cloud her better judgement and have you not work so hard and take all those pills. I'm sorry you never were able to stop taking them, no matter how hard you tried. I'm sorry you never could find a husband who really little Frances Ethel Gumm instead of "Judy Garland." I'm sorry that you never felt like you were deserving of being loved and cared for. I'm sorry you never felt good about your physical appearance. *Frankly, you were gorgeous once the 1940's hit and throughout much of the 50's, before all the binge drinking and pills took their toll on your body.* I'm sorry you never thought you were good enough - especially since what you probably felt was an average peformance of yours was brilliant to everyone else. I'm sorry you had to leave us all so soon, after only forty seven years on Earth, instead of being able to continue making your fans happy for these last 38 years since you left us. I'm sorry you couldn't be the great mother you so desperately wanted to be. I'm sorry you died broke from the cancellation of your all-too-short-lived TV show. I'm sorry that you were addicted during a time when it was career suicide to go to rehab so you could drop the pills once and for all and maybe still be alive.
Now that I've said all that, I want to thank you. Thank you for hours of countless viewing and listening pleasure. Thank you for your studio recordings, where I get to hear your glorious voice backed by music created by some of the greatest musicians in the world. Thank you for your live concert recordings, where I can not only hear you sing some of the greatest songs ever written and hear your fans cheering you on, wishing I'd been alive back then and been in attendance just to be that close to you and maybe even touch your hand. Thank you for your TV show. I've never seen it, but I've heard plenty of recordings from it, and it sounds like you had a great time doing it. Thank you for your movies, where I get to watch you, often looking gorgeous, sometimes looking like a lovely teenage girl who's going to grow up to be a heartbreaker someday maybe, doing what you do best. Thank you for being the major catalyst behind MGM buying the rights to The Wizard of Oz, and thank you for being in it. It just wouldn't have been the same without you, and maybe it wouldn't have provided me with countless years of memories, escapism, and pure pleasure. Thank you for loving your fans so much that you never wanted to stop making them happy.
Even though you've not been physically alive since 1969, somewhere, every minute of the day, SOMEONE is watching a movie with you or listening to one of your songs. And when they're doing that, it's like you're alive again. It's these records of your life and talent that ensure that for millions of people all over the world, you'll never really be gone. You achieved immortality without even trying.
I hope wherever you are, you're happy, and watching over your children and your fans, old and new, who still love you after all these years. Maybe I'll even get to meet you once I'm gone.
Thanks for everything,
No, fortunately, I did not cry while writing it, or I'd really have had to turn off Judy and walk away from the computer a little bit. :P