A lost a friend and some found perspective

Image (and a tasty bread recipe) from tasteofhome.com

This weekend, the smell of homemade bread fills our house in honor of a friend who passed away a few days ago. Why bread? Well, she gave us our bread maker as a wedding gift, so it just felt like a good thing to do.

I’m struggling with this loss, which is natural. Losing a friend is hard. But this particular loss is hitting me on a few different levels. You see, she and Mom were both diagnosed with cancer right around the same time. (You can read more about Mom’s diagnosis here.)

The thing about cancer is it can go one of two ways. Mom’s has gone one way (she continues to heal and find some much needed strength), and our friend's, heartbreakingly, went the other way. It just goes to show you that life is incredibly unstable. Why are our hands dealt the way they are?

I was recently visiting a narcolepsy message board as I’m known to do on occasion, and I came across a thread about a person who said something along the lines of this, “Sometimes I’d rather be dead than have to deal with narcolepsy.” Narcolepsy is difficult and my heart absolutely goes out to this person, but I just can’t imagine feeling this way. Life is precious. Sure, having this illness is a pain in the ass, but we all have our challenges to deal with. At least our paths are still on the road of living. At least we still have time to eat those tasty doughnuts, to play with those rambunctious doggies, to hug the ones we love...to live!

I miss my friend. She was a very good, very gentle, very kindhearted woman. Her passing leaves an absence in this world. But I’m thankful I’m alive to miss her. I’m thankful Mom is alive to miss her. And whether it’s November, a wonderful month for expressing gratitude, or any other month of the year, I hope we can all recognize the blessings that surround us on our paths.