When she first told me she was sick with terminal cancer, I was floored. How can this be? It took my breath away. I had no idea what to say. I couldn’t put two words together to form a sentence to respond. The thought of this wonderful human being who had become my friend was sick and nothing I did could change that fact.
I thought back to our first meeting. We had met on a message board several years earlier. We were both Michael Jackson fans and I was talking about this wild dream I had about elephants on a plane. It was funny, but the dream had sort of stuck with me and I wanted someone to help me figure out if the dream held any meaning. I was reading some of the posts on the board, and there it was. She had answered my post. Just one line: “sometimes dreams have other meanings”. Imagine all these 100’s of posts and I caught hers. I had logged out and not responded that day, but went looking for her probably two days later, and when she responded, we exchanged emails. She spent a lot of time over the next few months helping me look at my dreams in a different way. From here, we forged a friendship. As we learned about each other and our families, we just continued to talk, not only through emails and chat, but through phone calls and sometimes the mail. She sent me this beautiful book about Michael that I cherish greatly.
Karen was an animal lover and raised llamas. What an interesting and unique thing I learned about her. She called them her boys. She sent me pictures of her “babies”. She loved to garden and store away foods. She loved Nature. One of her online personas was “Nature Dancing”.
She was one of a kind. Imagine having a friend who rarely got upset about anything. How often do you have a friend, who listens, offers a listening ear, and is always willing to talk, no matter the time. I cried to her so many times I can’t even count. I remember when I got laid off how upset I was and she was right there. Now, mind you, we never met face to face, but only online friends. It didn’t matter, we were friends, forged together by grief and love of one of our favorite artist. We spent a lot of time talking about Michael, our own kids and grandkids, whatever subject we wanted to discuss.
I was off work for 11 months and after I went back to work, I wasn’t able to spend as much time chatting every day. Our chats weren’t as long and became farther apart. I missed our daily interactions, but we were still close. I remember a time that actually came to me a few days ago that I had written her phone number down in a book and it was near a phone number my husband needed regarding his 401k plan. He kept calling her instead of the 401k. She kept saying “you have the wrong number.” He said that he wasn’t sure why they kept saying that. I asked to see what number he was calling. It dawned on me it was her number. So I called her. She said to tell him “I already spent the money.” That was so like her.
This past Saturday, Karen passed away from her long battle with cancer. She had told me early on that the doctors didn’t give her “you have this much time.” I know from what she told me, that she was going to enjoy her life until whatever happens does. She meant it. I loved her and I still do. She brought much joy into my life and helped me to see things I wasn’t able to. I cherish every single moment of her life she shared with me. Thank you so much, Nature for sharing your life and family with me. I will miss you forever. I know if I need you, I can always reach out and talk to you and you will always be there. Love always ..
Take flight, eagle, over the mountains
Spread your wings and fly as the wind
lifts you high and carries
TigerLilly (she knows what this means)