“End of Life” Those are the words the doctors used to tell my dear, dear friend that she is dying. So how do you deal when this change in life occurs?
Well if I could take a page from her manual of how to deal, trust me that she has set the bar very high on what each of us should do and absolutely NOT do. My friend has set a great example of grace as she has been the pillar of that and more throughout this her final journey on earth. While the both of us have had our moments of tears, I have gained enormous strength though her faith and peace that has helped me to deal with yet another tremendous loss in my life. There have been times when she could have gone to the dark side and never come out. But she has chosen to not let “the Big C” defeat her spirit or shorten the fullness of the memories within her capacity to enjoy.
For me, this journey has been difficult too and one that I doubt I will ever manage without the “ugly cry”. Back in 2001, I lost the very first deep down, gut wrenching best friend I’ve ever known. I didn’t know that I could hurt that much, nor did I ever think that I could recover from that tremendous loss. Yet, as the years have passed, I have known even deeper loss with that of my mother, mother-in-law, and several dear, close friends in the last couple of decades. So why would this loss be more difficult or cause as much pain? Probably because from the beginning, we were not destined to be friends. In all actuality, we didn’t even like one another. As it turns out, we were cut from a similar cloth which has helped both of us deal 1 on 1 with the pending end to her life and the end to a dear friendship.
As I sit in her living room putting this conversation on paper, I’m reflecting on her strength and courage. I have had my moments of sadness and tears, yet when I see the peace in her face and hear the lack of regret when we speak, I know that no matter what the next phase brings, she is ok with this transition which helps me to be ok with it too.
My challenge to you is to evaluate those in your life who bring you peace and joy. If you find, as my friend has found out, that there are those in your life who only come when there is drama or “issues”, then it’s time to transition them out of your life. As my friend fights the fight of her life, I rally around her and invite my friends to join me in prayers around the world for God’s healing grace, comfort, and peace regardless of what the future holds.
To my friend, and to those of you facing similar circumstances, I say, “transition well”. My friend has taught me more than I can put into words, and I will honor her memory by exemplifying grace as I transition through this “end of life” journey with her – my bestie!