Vanessa Bryant on loss of Kobe and Gianna: 'I need to be strong ... for my 3 daughters'

"Mad I’m not with Kobe and Gigi but thankful I’m here with Natalia, Bianka and Capri," Vanessa Bryant wrote on Instagram.
Former Los Angeles Laker Kobe Bryant watches a tribute video with his family during an NBA game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors in Los Angeles on Dec. 18, 2017.
Former Los Angeles Laker Kobe Bryant watches a tribute video with his family during an NBA game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors in Los Angeles on Dec. 18, 2017.Chris Carlson / AP file

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By Janelle Griffith

Vanessa Bryant said in an Instagram post Monday that her brain refuses to accept that her husband, Kobe Bryant, and their 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, are gone.

"I’ve been reluctant to put my feelings into words," she wrote in a caption on a video montage of Gianna playing basketball and being coached by the NBA legend. "My brain refuses to accept that both Kobe and Gigi are gone. I can’t process both at the same time."

She said she is trying to process her husband being gone, but her body refuses to accept her daughter is gone.

"It feels wrong. Why should I be able to wake up another day when my baby girl isn’t being able to have that opportunity?! I’m so mad. She had so much life to live," she wrote on Instagram.

"Then I realize I need to be strong and be here for my 3 daughters," she wrote. "Mad I’m not with Kobe and Gigi but thankful I’m here with Natalia, Bianka and Capri."

She wrote, "I know what I’m feeling is normal. It’s part of the grieving process."

"I just wanted to share in case there’s anyone out there that’s experienced a loss like this," she also wrote. "God I wish they were here and this nightmare would be over. Praying for all of the victims of this horrible tragedy. Please continue to pray for all."

Kobe Bryant and Gianna died along with seven other people in a helicopter crash last month. Last week, Vanessa Bryant announced a memorial would be held Feb. 24 at the Staples Center, where her husband played for most of his 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers.

She described the memorial as “A Celebration of Life," in an Instagram post with the caption: "#2, #24, #20 years as a Laker," adding that 20 is also the number of years she and Kobe Bryant were together.

Gianna wore the jersey No. 2 on her youth basketball team and her father wore No. 24 later in his career.