Last week I met an old friend of mine who I don’t often see. We go back circa 2000 or so when we became house mates living adjacent to Lansdowne park here in the capitol. We became fast friends as soon as we met. There were plenty of adventures together, we shared good times and bad, I was a bridesmaid in her wedding and she in mine, we both eventually settled down and had children.
I’m comfortable saying my friend always had questionable taste in men (sorry love but you did) and never quite seemed to learn her lessons in love. There were always a lot of tears, frustration and stress. The man she chose to marry unfortunately was one of those un-learned lessons, but they had 3 beautiful children together a set of twins and then another less than a year later. Her life was never boring to say the least, but she always managed to find the silver lining.
Fast forward to November 2016. My friend has finally come out the other side of divorce, finding at long last someone who treats her well, loves her and respects her and her children. After being out for a lovely 40th birthday dinner with her significant other, she finds a sore spot on one of her breasts. She made the very wise decision to have it checked out only to find you guessed it…. cancer. It’s actually F’in cancer! Happy F’in birthday.
I was pretty much in shock when she told me. How could this happen? They say cancer affects everyone eventually. I guess it’s true. I have known people who had it, some survived some did not, but they were never really in my inner circle. She’s my age ( 2 years younger actually) has children my children’ s age, and it really has become a wake-up call. This could be me.
At this point I can honestly say I don’t really know what to do for her. She has decided to undergo chemotherapy to fight it and a fight she will have. I didn’t think I would be affected this much by her diagnosis because we don’t really see each other that often anymore, but it just hits so close to home.
The one thing she asked me for was a no-brainer. Could I please take some photos of her with her family and boyfriend before she loses all of her beautiful long blonde hair. Yes! I could do that, I could easily do that. A simple gift, something small for me, but enormous for her.
When you are pretty much feeling helpless to help others going through something dramatic, try to remember that any little gesture you can offer can make a huge difference to someone else. If you can bake, cook, drive, do laundry, babysit, wash dishes, deliver a pizza, take photos or a hundred other skills that might seem trivial to you, offer them up to a friend or family member in need and the love that emanates from a simple gesture might just be enough to help someone heal a little faster.
Fight the good fight my friend and if you need anything else, I am here for you.