During the summer of 2006 I had just gone back to work after having Leila and I felt like I was this totally different person, but no one else could see it. My whole world had been turned upside down, and as much as I love being a mom, I was having a hard time adjusting to the new me. It was around this time that I happened across a message board. I found it by chance, searching for information about a local child who had had an accident, and I joined to learn more about her condition. 3 years later, that child’s mother is a dear friend of mine…along with about 100 other women (and the occasional man). This place helped me find my way in the new “me”. These women have supported me through many rough times, and celebrated many happy times with me over the last 3 years, and I have done the same with them. It is a community like no other, and I am blessed to be a part of it. I have been exposed to people from all over the world, with all different experiences. So yes, I am a dork, and I love my computer because my friends live in it.
Over the weekend a terribly sad thing happened to us. My dear friend and fellow mother Vaike passed on far too soon, from cancer.
I felt a bit silly sitting at my computer and crying with a bunch of other women, sitting at their computers reading the same news. Trying to explain to my family why I am so upset was hard for me. I don’t think it is an easy thing to understand, but when it comes down to it, these women know more about me than most of my “real life” friends, and I love them. I love Vaike. I love her husband, and her children, and I am torn apart inside for all of them. The world has truly lost a beautiful person. After a few days of constant tears, I am finally trying to follow the advice that Vaike left for us, to “look for beauty” so when I got to celebrate the new pregnancy of one of my dear “real life” friends today, I felt a small amount of sorrow lift away from me.
I am so blessed to have known her, and to have the rest of my online family to lean on, but once again I am reminded that Grief is the price we pay for love, and the more you love, the more you grieve. I would like to think that I don’t let that hold me back, if there is one thing that I am good at, it’s love, it is the grief part that I always have a tough time with. And getting through the days without a breakdown, has been a challenge for me.
Here is a gift that we made for our friend Vaike. She was able to watch it and be reminded of all of us that love her and support her as she faced her journey to a better place with such grace. Her faith is inspiring.