Sunday, January 3, 2016


Sometimes news hits you like a hammer. At one moment in time life is good, everyone is happy. A split second later life is full of pain, people are crying, aching.

Phones bring friends into your life with hopes of meeting soon, or sharing joy.

Phones bring black times instantly, shattering calm days and crushing hopes and dreams.

Coming out of our dance class, riding our bicycles in the sunshine, my phone rang when I couldn’t quickly get to it. It stopped ringing but changed to the warbling tone that signals a text message.

When we got home we went inside and I reached for my phone expecting some happy message from a friend.

The message was from our friend Dave, but it was a message that punched the wind out of my chest. Marsha, a dear friend, was dead.

We called him immediately and pulled the painful details from him. The illness on Christmas Day, the pain, the ambulance, the surgery.

We called Mike. Mike and Marsha were one. We met one thru the other. We laughed, talked, rode our motorcycles, went on vacation. Enjoyed each other as close friends do.

To talk to Mike was tearful, broken, gasping. Both trying to win over our mutual grief.

I remembered having to tell Barbara when her father died and I took the message. I remembered my sister having to tell me of my brother in law’s passing. The same feeling of being on the edge of a precipice filled with grief, pain and anguish.

Neither of us could talk too long, wounded we need to give grief time to work itself to the surface and then to face it in the cold light of day.

Slowly friends called and we shared the hurt. We called more friends with the news. The circle grew and more people felt the anguish.

Marsha and I painted, she loved painting and the painting group I introduced her to. I sent them a message. The group was instantly changed, painting set aside. A group of people who knew her only on the internet, spread across the whole globe mourned for someone they never met in person but who enjoyed her lively spirit and talent.

Thanks for being part of our lives Marsha, we love you.