I've reported on death's before, I even did it earlier today, but I've never written about a friend dieing. I don't know how to make sense of the emotions I'm feeling as I'm writing and make any kind of coherent statement about such an amazing person.
That's what Patch was, an amazing person. I'm sure that anyone who is reading this who knew her will agree with that in a second, and for those of you who never knew her, I'm sorry that you missed that opportunity.
I first met patch years ago, back when she was in her teens. A friend of mine owned a comic book shop, and as per the rules when one of your best friends owns a comic book shop I was always hanging out there.
That's where I met Patch, She must have been fourteen or fifteen at the time, and would come in after school and at the weekends and hang out. She was always excited to be in the shop, to get to hang out with other geeks and have a place where it was cool to be different and into 'silly' things. It was always great to see her and her friends be so passionate about their interests.
I lost contact with Patch for a while after that, but thanks to modern technology was soon in contact with her again. We'd talk for hours and hours over the web about so many different topics, from TV, to politics, to the deeply personal.
Patch talked in depth with me about her questions about her gender, and shared some things with me that made me feel deeply honoured for that trust. She asked me about writing, and spoke so passionately about her wanting to write on politics.
She talked to me about some of the trouble she had had through the Internet, from people sending her hate and the effect that it had had on her. She spoke to me about her mental and physical health. She spoke to me about so much, and with such honesty that it was hard to feel like I didn't know her well.
That was part of what made Patch special to me, she was never afraid to talk about subjects that would make other people scared to share. She understood that their were social stigmas around subjects like gender, sexuality, mental health, and she knew that those stigmas were complete bullshit.
Patch understood that there were so many problems with the world, that she and others were going through a whole range of different issues that weren't being talked about, and she went out of her way to make sure that it was okay to talk about those things.
She displayed a wisdom and caring that was almost unheard of in someone of her age. In a lot of ways she was the kind of person I wished I could be, which I never told her and wished I did. She joked with me that I was like a 'big sister' to her, and told me how much she admired me, but the truth is Patch, I think I looked up to you more.
You were off at Uni, doing things you loved, getting involved with groups and charities, you took part in workshops for important subjects, you were taking the world by storm and trying to make a positive impact. You were amazing.
I hate that for so long we only talked online, and I wish we could have seen each other in person more. I hate that through writing this whole thing I'm having to write about you in the past tense. I'm going to miss our conversations, and seeing your amazing posts and tweets come up in my news feed.
You were a truly amazing person, wise beyond your years, passionate and caring. The world has lost one of it's best and brightest.
I miss you 'little sister'.