Last week was a tough one and a cheery week in review doesn’t quite seem appropriate. Our family lost a dear friend to cancer. She and her husband have known my parents since before I was born. To call them just friends isn’t quite right. They’re family too and her loss has been tough to handle.
Just before Christmas she was diagnosed with lung cancer that spread to her brain and bones. The outlook was never good, but she was a brave woman who stared a devastating diagnosis in the face and fought it to the very end. She passed away peacefully with just her mom by her side after everyone had left to give them a moment alone.
Monica was a wonderful woman, wife, mother, daughter, sister and friend. She was kind and funny. I will never forget her laugh. Nobody laughed quite like Monica. I am so thankful for all the memories of her I get to carry with me. And I’m particularly thankful that she and Wyatt were able to be a part of each other’s lives, even if for a brief time. She was so excited that I was having a baby and when Wyatt finally arrived I think she was just about as happy as my own mom was about it. I know she would have been like his third grandma. And I think when I show Wyatt this picture when he’s older, that’s exactly what I’ll call her:
It seems so surreal that just a few months ago we were laughing and she was rubbing my belly at my baby shower. And now she’s just gone. It makes you realize that you have to live for right now. You have to appreciate the time you get with people you love. You have to tell people you love them.
In the end Monica reported seeing angels in her hospital room. I believe it. And I believe they were there when she drew her last breath and I believe they ushered her to her final home. The pain of losing her is made a bit more bearable knowing that her suffering has ended and that, as my mom puts it, she’s onto her next great adventure.