Last night I lost a very sweet friend, KJ. She was a funny, intelligent woman of tremendous talent and heart. She was a brilliant writer and a wonderful wife and mother. Her family meant everything to her. She was a woman of great faith and bold action. There will always be a whole in my life where she should be.
I had planned to write about something completely different this morning but then the news came and I knew what I needed to do.
There is no video this morning. It’s Ash Wednesday and I am writing this late the night before. I won’t be on-line tomorrow. It’s a day of fasting and prayer and now with KJ’s death, it feels even more important for me to spend time in the quiet.
This weeks writing prompt from Holley is ” A small thing that makes a big difference…”
KJ was a woman who paid attention to details. She would remember the shoes you wore three weeks ago or the fabulous cake you made last Christmas. One of her gifts was remembering the small things and making you feel like you could set the world on fire with whatever little thing you wrote, wore or made. She was a natural cheerleader to those of us in her writing circle and to think I won’t hear her British lilt anymore saddens me to my core.
We would meet once a week, the Fab Fairfax Four, latte’s on hand, writers woes on the table. She was a woman of bold action. She took no prisoners and wrote two very successful children’s books and was working on a third. She had dreams and goals and when cancer came three years ago that didn’t slow her down one bit. She knew she would die of this disease, so she lived the fullest life her body allowed.
She was a woman of grit who in the midst of her own battle with cancer would make a fabulous pot of beef stew and drop it off on my doorstep when Courtney was having a hard day. She just knew I would decline if asked, but stepped forth boldly anyway and it made all the difference in my world.
She taught me to have confidence and courage with my writing. She listened when I was discouraged about Courtney or when things were difficult with life in general. She was a wonderful listener.
But most of all she was happy. Always smiling, laughing and she had the BEST sense of humor. Even when she lost her hair with chemo, the jokes rolled on. Cancer was not going to take her joy away. Even at the end she would whisper a word or phrase in answer to whatever we were talking about and she would have us all laughing with her perfect timing.
THAT will always be the “small thing that makes a big difference…” in my life.
No matter what is going on, or how bad I think things are there is always something to take joy from. There is always something to laugh about. There is always something that will make me smile. It’s like God’s little ray of sunshine in the midst of the storm.
A gift to keep me moving forward and focused on HIM.
Now KJ rests with HIM, the one who created her and knew the time and place when she would come back home to Him. She is at peace and no longer in pain. I will miss her so very much. But I know that the lessons she taught me in perseverance and fortitude will stay with me the rest of my life.
She taught me so many things. To be kind always. To smile even if you’re having a crappy day. To encourage before any criticism. To be bold and not back down. To love with ALL you have.
So many “small things that make a big difference…”