A women that I knew through neighborhood parties, said hi to in the grocery store and, from the outside, lived a life very similar to mine, passed away last night. She was 39, had three children and a wonderful husband and although seemingly healthy, was diagnosed with leukemia less than 8 months ago.
I had heard about her diagnosis through the grapevine and ran into her in Target once after that. She looked fine to me. I expressed my concern and chatted for maybe a minute. Now she's dead. She's dead with three children at home that are the same age as mine and will grow up without a mother.
I did not follow her condition and heard this morning that she would not live through the weekend. I came home today and read all of the Caring Bridge posts over the last 7 months. I am now intimately aware of how horrific and yet hopeful the last 7 months of her life were. There was such an amazing outpouring of love and support from her family and friends. I feel guilty that I read it all after the fact and did nothing myself to help her or express my support. My heart and entire body aches for her and for her family.
Today I hugged my husband a little tighter and my children a little longer. I lay with my 2 year old at bedtime and she gave me sweet kisses in the dark. I have no idea if my life will be short or long. What I do know is all I have is NOW and I want to make the most of it. I want it to be on purpose. I think I will finally read the book that is referenced in the prior post. And, of course, make more pancakes.