I recently said farewell to a dear friend. It wasn’t easy. Rather than wait for the celebration of her life, I needed to say my farewells in a little more privacy. So my family and I visited her at the Funeral Home. How calm and peaceful these places are. But its peace did not help very much. As I held her hand and mourned her passing, most importantly, rolling around inside my head was such sadness at knowing I’ll never interact with her again.
Our times together over the past thirty years had been filled with so much fun and laughter. Like true friends, sometimes months would go past without us seeing each other. But once we were together, the stories would roll and the laughter would flow.
Even when she was first diagnosed, I truly believed her strength of character would fight and destroy the cancer plaguing her. She was so gloriously tough and stubborn.
My immediate close social circle is quite small. To lose someone from within that circle feels so devastating right now. No more wandering across the road for a good old yarn and a giggle or two. No more demanding hubby come and make her a special coffee – cos I cannot stand even the smell of coffee – when she visits. Her passing leaves a huge hole in my life. And right now I’m not sure how I can plug that hole up.
My dear friend fought for six months. It was a long six months with many stints in hospital. But she fought on and fought hard. Wonderfully, at her request, her family had a party to beat all parties. Attended by a huge number of people, she was able to enjoy what was basically her own wake. Friends from her and her husband’s many interests congregated to share some final time with her. It was amazing as well as heartbreaking. I couldn’t watch as her husband, daughters and grandchildren “danced” with her in her wheelchair. She passed away in hospital shortly after her grand party.
Omicron played a painful role for me during her final days. In her last week at home, I was struck down with Covid and could not visit. My promise of support and assistance became empty words. Her inquiries about my health and wellbeing during our numerous phone calls showed her true character. I will always regret not being available to share those days with her. Farewell, dear friend. I will forever treasure your memory.