My dear close friend, confidante and former co-worker has been ill for some time. It's cancer which started in the stomach then spread over two years to her liver. She was doing so well after surgery and then chemo. We were hopeful.
We worked together (she taught me everything I ever learned about youth work) and shared our divorce pain and the raising of our respective daughters alone. Most of all we shared a humour that is unique to individuals thrown together in life who then experience an unexplainable and fabulous connection called friendship.
She moved away after her divorce to the city some time ago but friends do not need to be in contact every day or even every month. They can just pick up where they left off any time, and we did frequently over the years.
She is such an inspiration, always seeing the funny side of things and pointing out the silver lining in the negatives. She brought out the best in all whose lives she touched. We ran several youth groups together, in difficult areas and difficult times and often had to encourage our young people to move on to adult activities when they reached 18 because we couldn't get them to go away!!
I went to the city to visit her in hospital last week and her daughters told me she was on a high for days afterwards because we laughed so much together.
I hope together we taught our young people that they are worthy, that they are capable and that they can achieve anything they want to. I hope we taught them to strive, to work hard, to laugh and to be themselves because they are unique and strong. I hope we taught them to stay on track and never to give up hope for a good future. I think we did.
I know we all lose good friends, parents and family members. It is always hard to lose loved ones. She is just so young and vibrant to be facing the end so early in her life. I'm just struggling, and angry, and so sad. Not for me but for her girls, for her work and for the young people she fought for, and represented.
She doesn't have long. But life isn't measured in years but by who you were and what you gave to others, and she gave loads and then some.
I'm not looking for hugs or support because I will be ok (though I will gratefully receive them), I just needed to get this out.......somewhere, and as ever S.I. has provided me with the means. Thank you again S.I. and thank you my dear and precious wee friend, for being part of my life, for teaching me about young people and for showing me how endless laughter and humour can be brought into every single day and every situation. DDay - April 2008
Me - 54 and doing great. Found myself again and loving life
Him - who??
I can see clearly now, the rain is gone (Johnny Nash)
Those who stir the shit soup get to lick the spoon!