Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Four weeks ago, a very dear friend of mine who lives around the corner from me was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. My friend's name is (American) Denise. I make the distinction because of my lifelong friend Denise in South Africa.

(A)D is in her early 50's. She and husband, Bob have a son, Brian of 20 years old and a daughter, Jessica who very recently turned 13. About a year ago Denise was retrenched. She went on to do short and long term temp jobs and her husband continued working at his two jobs. Despite their best efforts, they fell victim to the sub-prime mortgage crisis and lost their home to foreclosure. Sometimes life has a way of coming at you from all sides and the process of having to leave their house and (A)D taking this ill have now coincided.

This weekend (A)D was taken into the hospital and the situation is such that it is not clear if she has hours or days remaining.

For the last few weeks I have been driving Ross to school and then coming back to our neighborhood to drive Jess to her school. While waiting for her to come out of the house one morning, I noticed how the sun was reflecting in the water drops as they tricked down the house as it had just rained. It created the impression of fairy lights. With everything in full bloom in the gardens and the lush green trees, this whole image created for a picture-perfect setting. I couldn’t help but burst into tears as I thought how harshly different the reality of this household actually is. It all looked so perfect on the surface yet what is going on underneath it is nothing short of horrible.

This morning as I drove back toward the house I was overwhelmed by the sadness of this impending loss in my life. I am going to miss (A)D so much. I am heartbroken that her kids will not have their Mom in their life and right now, knowing she will be with them in spirit just doesn’t provide me with much comfort. I know well enough that time will pass and the sadness subsides and then I will shift into the place of memories that will bring joy to my heart and a smile to my face.

In an email I was writing to my friend, Natacha after getting home from the school run I told her how I was distracted with thoughts of (A)D all the time. I went on to say how thinking about this has put me in touch with how much I value, love, appreciate and cherish all my friends. I told her I was in a real tree hugging mood and that I wanted to hug all my friends and tell them how much I love them.

Although I had planned on returning to my blog after this three month absence with a lighter subject, I decided that I wanted to reach out to all my friends and doing so here in honor of (A)D was a perfect way.

We throw these concepts around in our conversations every day, but today I say this with a heightened sensitivity and a deep feeling of connectedness to it – thank you for your friendship. Thank you for the emails and the messages on my blog extending good wishes and thoughts to me. I so appreciate the emails of a more intimate nature that have expressed deep concern for my health and wellbeing while I haven’t been blogging recently.

In honor of my friend (American)Denise I make this request –
At some time today,
down tools – take a deep breath – count your blessings and exhale.
Acknowledge yourself for being a vibrant, loving and much valued being
that makes a significant difference in the world every moment, of every day.
Erase every negative thought you might have had about yourself today
and connect with your magnificence and total perfection.
Take another moment to contemplate your wellness and good health.
Let that bring a smile to your face.

More from me soon.