Thursday, April 12, 2007
“Live life to the full” is lasting tribute to friend
Sometimes, something happens which crashes headlong into your world and reminds you that life is not always fair.
At the weekend, I attended a memorial service for one of my closest and oldest friends who had passed away the previous week after being diagnosed with cancer just two months earlier.
Sadly, by the time my friend was diagnosed with cancer, the disease had spread so much that she had little time to mount a serious challenge against it.
The shock of discovering just how ill she was had remained slightly tempered until I was finally able to visit her at home just five days before she died.
But seeing my friend was what really drove home the tragedy of it all.
The effects of the disease and chemotherapy had reduced this once vibrant woman, just two years older than I am, to a shadow of her former physical self.
But, while the mischievous sparkle that once always danced in her eyes had dimmed, the spirit of the woman I had known for over 20 years still remained, battling to the end.
And even though grievously ill, my friend still possessed the grace and consideration for others, with which she had conducted herself throughout her life, to ask after myself and my own family.
Five short days later, on Good Friday, she passed away peacefully at home.
Such things certainly make you evaluate your life. The danger is you only pay ‘lip service’ with another promise to ‘live life to the full’ as a result and it is not long before you are, once again, worrying about small, petty insignificant things that don’t really matter.
But I will make sure I heed that advice this time - doing so will be the best lasting tribute I can pay to my friend.
I knew at the time of my visit, that there was a very real chance she might die before I could come back, but on leaving, I promised her I would see her again.
And I will, one day.
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