Ovarian cancer is a nasty, evil disease.  On Monday, it took the life of my friend.  She was an amazing person who fiercely fought the cancer.  She was someone you wanted to be friends with because she was a wonderful friend.  Even when battling cancer, she still wanted to know what you were struggling with and what was going on in your life.  You would spill your guts and then later kick yourself for unloading on her your petty worries when she was doing battle.  She was always optimistic.  Even though she was afraid and she did not want to lose her life with her husband, I never heard her question why this was her lot in life.  She was loving, compassionate, and feisty.  I can’t believe that she is gone.  She was 32 years old. 

She always dreamed of being a mother.  She would have been an amazing mother.  When she and her husband were having problems getting pregnant, they had exploratory surgery.  You can guess what they found.  She found out she had cancer 2 days before my son was born, late in August of 2005.  After her initial cancer surgery and cancer treatment, they thought that she had beaten the cancer.  They began to explore adoption.  She received adoption applications in the mail shortly before she found out that the cancer had returned.  That was in June of 2006.  This time, the cancer was back with a vengeance.  At first, treatments seemed to be working.  Just a few weeks ago, she went in for a CT scan.  She had a feeling that the treatment wasn’t working as well as before.  She was right, the cancer was slowly progressing.  They stopped the treatment and suggested that she find an experimental treatment.  She was to begin that treatment yesterday.  Instead, the cancer attacked her with a vengeance that no one expected.  The physical pain she experienced was excruciating.  She is now at peace.  Her funeral is in the morning.  I dread going because then her death will be  reality.  Right now, it feels like I just haven’t seen her in a while.  I don’t want to feel the pain of acknowledging that she really is gone.

Her death has reminded me of the tremendous influence that even the shortest life can have – for good or for bad.  She changed so many people for the better, myself included.  We all know those people who have lived a long life but influenced few.  We also know those people who seem to leak poison and pain.  She brought joy and faith.  She made you feel cared for by her.  She had a huge impact on my life.  I have had 2 miscarriages.  Their tiny and brief heartbeats had a tremendous impact on my life, on my husband’s life, and on my boys’ lives.  Their lives made me a better person, and I don’t regret them.  My friend made a tremendous impact on my life.  I wouldn’t trade the pain of losing her for the joy of knowing her.  I believe she is in heaven holding my babies, being the mom that she deserved to be.  I miss you, sweet friend.     

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