I have been quiet for a while in here, and it is with a good reason.
Saturday the 3’rd of February, my best friend in the entire world passed away from cancer. She had battled it for almost two years and finally her body could not take it anymore and shut down. The news of her passing broke me down, because due to the many changes in my own life, as well as the increasing pain she felt, we kept postponing our meetings. She did not want me to see her suffer, and I respected it… I therefore never got to say goodbye to her.
It is with a heavy heart that I write this post, and I have no idea where to begin… I want to tell her story, but there is no one better at doing so than herself…
If I should tell it, I would begin in May 2016. It had been a week of sunshine and warmth and as we strolled the streets of Aarhus, we chatted about how strange she felt recently. She had menstrual cramps and bled slightly. Both of us thought it was an STD, and I told her how important it was for her to seek a gynaecologist for a check. You see, she was a very private woman, when it came to things like these, and she had never been checked down there… Nor has she had an HPV vaccine – not even when our generation could get it for free for a year.
It was another lovely day that turned extremely dark when she called me at work to tell me that the doctor thought she had cervical cancer and needed treatment right away. The tumour was so big, that the treatment consisted of intense radiation mixed with chemotherapy, which meant that she would never be able to have children. I had to take deep breaths in order to drive carefully home to her as I rushed to see my best friend who was sitting with these sad news all alone.
And as she started her treatment, I became pregnant. In winter 2016, she was declared cancer free and could now look forward for an adoption (after five years has gone), you see, her biggest dream was to have a child. It was a ray of sunlight in the dark winter months and there was hope for the future.
Though something felt wrong. Her body felt weak, depressed and as if it was slowly eating itself up. When she asked for a check-up, they noticed that the cancer had spread itself to the lymphatics and from the examinations, they could see it has possibly spread to her entire uterus. With a heavy heart, she agreed to get it removed… But that did not help either…
The summer my daughter got born, my friend started a heavy treatment of chemo. And as she maybe have needed me the most, I dedicated myself for my own child that needed me more. As her hair fell of her head, leaves started falling from the trees. On September the 4’th 2017, she got the feared news… She could not be cured! The cancer has spread itself to her spine, bones, kidneys and lungs. From that day on, it went downhill.
Each month on the 4’th, she and her family celebrated life, and that another month had passed. In two days she raised 50.000 DKK for C-vitamin treatment to get energy for her remaining time. She was positive till the end… she truly believed that she could get cured, and so did I. The other possibility seemed so unreal. And whenever we met, we goofed around, talked only a bit about her illness, and instead laughed about everything like nothing was wrong. However, it strikes me how well my daughter could read her. Once we visited her, she cried the entire time. Screamed more likely. She did not want to be held by my friend. She knew something was wrong, even though us adults tried to hide it as well as we could.
It was past new years eve, she agreed to get hospitalized at a hospice. She told everyone it was to control her pain just so she could go home later. Maybe it was to keep that remaining hope she had. Yet it got worse and worse… and worse. I was so far away from her now that I could barely imagine what she was going through, even though I talked with her every day. Each time I tried to arrange a meeting, she cancelled due to heavy pain.
I respected her wishes, and I understood that she would maybe not want to see someone whose life is at a completely different place. As her life was ending, my life was beginning. But what could I do? I could not just show up, when she did not want to see me…
She wrote to me one final time… It felt like a final text from her due to the way she expressed her love and a promise of seeing me again.
A couple of days later, she died.
And this weekend, as I watched the white coffin getting carried away down the church corridor that was filled with beautiful flowers that she liked so much, I could not hold it in me anymore. My eyes followed it till it went though the heavy wooden doors. I wanted a glimpse of her one last time… A final glimpse. And I wanted to scream as tears silently rolled down my cheeks. I demanded to get her back! I demanded to see her.
Writing this post breaks my heart. It feels like I have a ball of dry air in my throat that I cannot get out. I feel breathless as I tap these letters. I cannot believe she is gone. Each day I find small things in life I want to share with her, but she is not there, and I feel lost and so alone.
I know that she is not completely gone, because I see her everywhere still. I see her in the never aging aesthetic beauty of the flowers, the silliness of our common friend, my own strength and everything else she has taught me. She was so brave… Fragile but strong.
True to the end, no finer friend…
Now and for always ❤