Well, I would like to introduce you to my friend LAURA. If anyone had told me a year ago that people could become so close and so deeply bonded over the Internet, I would have blurted out a loud and emphatic "Posh and hogwash."
But I have learned differently now. I have formed a few very close friendships on the Net,(Hi, youse guys!) and so now I scrub my foot up real spiffy, as I certainly did put my foot in my mouth, didn't I?
Laura, ah yes....my friend Laura. How do I tell you about Laura? For one thing, we bonded almost instantly. I met her by following a link from Missy's site to hers, and I was immediately taken by her honesty, her courage, her willingness to share the events of her journey with cancer through her Journal. I saw broad glimpses of her deep faith in God, her love of nature, her belief in mankind, and yes, even her humour.
I sent her a cyber card after visiting her site, and when I awoke the next morning, there was a card for me from her! Well, that was the beginning of a wonderful, enriching, heart-touching friendship....a friendship with no real words to describe it. The sweetest, most tender friendship a person could ever hope to share with another. I have taken Websters Dictionary and shaken it up and thrown all the words out on the table to sort through...and still I am unable to find just the right words to express my feelings. Suffice it to say, my heart reflects on the hundreds of wonderful emails, and many hours spent on the phone together with great pleasure, respect, gratitude, and abiding love and friendship.
At one point, we each wrote a letter to the other, just sharing each and every thing about ourselves that we could think of....our likes, dislikes, color schemes, house decorations, habits, hobbies, favorite this and that....just absolutely everything and anything that came to mind. Well, we sure learned that day that we had far more in common than windchimes and websites! WOW! We were both amazed to see all the similarites....hey! two peas in one pod! We even drank our coffee the same way, and favored the same kind of pizza....hawaiian, of course, with lots of cheese! And so we became the CyberTwins!
We made great plans to visit each other, and just stay up all night drinking coffee and showing off our 'puter toys' to each other. We prayed together, laughed together, cried together, and rejoiced over the great medical reports as they came in...YIPPIE! YIPPIE! YIPPIE! We made big plans together, shared our fears, our anxieties, our anger, our frustrations. Yup, we have even talked the usual 'girlie' talk, giggled a lot, acted like a couple of kids sharing one milkshake with two straws! Ah, yes, and we even did that a few times.....the 'tiff' thing. (Ever try to squabble via email? What a hilarious blast THAT is...LOL!) But each time we came through it with a better understanding of each other, and perhaps an even greater trust and belief in our friendship.
She helped me BIGtime with my website....always making great suggestions and checking to make sure things looked right after I made them. (Gee, thanks, oh ye honorable mentor.....bow, bow, scrape, scrape!) She made the very beautiful HeavenSent title graphic for my page, and has taught me a lot of tricks about graphics and computing. And gee, am I ever excited! In September, I will be visiting her and her family for nine days, and she has promised to teach me even more tricks o' the trade, and give me some hands-on lessons in the great graphics that she does! (Yikes...I sure hope I get a passing grade! Ah, please, Laura, go easy on yer ol' buddy, eh?)
One day she said she had an early birthday present for me, something for the website. So I gave her my password, and heigh ho, heigh ho'd my way off to work, just wondering all the while what this delightful gal was up to now! When I got home and flipped on the computer and called up HeavenSent, there were some more beautiful graphics she had made me, and she had fixed up my links page...I just couldn't seem to get it through my thick skull what she was telling me on the phone the night before, and I was getting panicky and frustrated because my main page was just waaaay toooooo looooong.
And right under the area where I had written my thanks to her for the HeavenSent title graphic she made me was yet another message. She had simply changed the word "graphic" to "graphics" and said "You're welcome, Sweetie!" Oh, WOW! I suddenly burst into laughter, and I laughed and laughed in sheer delight, just thinking how funny it was that she knew I would be so tickled, and would be saying "Gee, thank you, thank you, thank you!" and she had answered me on the website!
And then, just as suddenly, I broke down and cried for hours and hours, body wracking, heart rending tears and sobs, just knowing that someday this precious, wonderful, delightful friend of mine may be called Home before I was ready to let her go, and of course, I would NEVER be ready for that. Oh, it is so hard to describe the hurt and sadness I felt that night. Need to shake that Webster's bag of words again.....
And so today, I get that dreaded letter....yes, the disease has metastasized, yet again. Oh, what a sinking feeling to receive that letter this morning.
And still, she wrote with optimism, and even words of concern for how I was taking it all. She said.."Hey, we're not giving up yet...we just head into plan B, and then plan C, and plan D, etc. and just keep going!" Yup, that's my Laura, alrighty...ever the optimist, the fighter, the lady of great faith and belief in miracles! How I love and admire her, that precious friend of mine. ("Here are some bluebirds with wishes of good luck and happiness for you, Sweetie!")
I remember the day I wrote her and I said I wished I could be there to give her a hug....She wrote back and said "Oh, but you have, Paula, maybe not physical ones, but a true hugs none the less!" Yes, I cried over that tender little remark! And then there was the time I asked her if Gene could take the day off from work to go to the doctor with her for some critical test results, and she wrote back and said she was going to do just fine at the doctor's office because she knew I would be there with her in spirit, and that she could feel my hand in hers. And this time my heart managed to smile through the tears in gratitude for the bond that we share.
I also remember the day she found this picture about the "miles between" and sent it to me, because she knew I felt so badly that I couldn't be there in person with her. More heart smiles, and yet even more tears. Oh my, how this dear lady has touched my life in such a sweet and tender way.
Yes, there is such a special bond between us, one that I cherish deeply and will never, ever forget. One that transcends the distance in miles that separate us and gives us other ways to reach out and support and care for one another, very much like the person who becomes blind developes and enhances other senses with which to 'see' the world he no longer sees with his eyes. And so I say......
Ah yes, Laura, I AM there with you, holding you close in my heart through every tear you shed, and every pain you feel, squeezing your hand through every test, and every visit to the doctor. Yes, Dear Heart, I will always and ever be hugging you in love and prayers.
You have come into my life, touched my heart and soul, and I will never, ever be the same. Oh, Laura, how do I ever tell you how much your friendship means to me. What a blessing you are in my life? How thankful I am that we met, and how much joy and laughter you have given me? How do I ever tell you how much I will miss you if you go? And how will I ever be able to let you go if that time comes, and to send you on your way with my blessing, and how do I ever find the words to say goodbye to you, my precious friend?
How do I explain that I will always cherish the good times, and cry for the times that we couldn't share, the plans we could not keep; and that as long as I remain here on this earth, so shall you, for your memory will always live on deep within my heart.
I once told you that I would tell you often and sincerely how much you mean to me, and how your friendship brightens my life, just in case tomorrow never comes. And that is something I have always tried to do, and will continue to do. Yes, just in case, Sweetie, just in case......
Ah, yes, Laura, you have a very special crown awaiting you...for you have given much, always caring and always sharing, giving freely of yourself to help others along the bumpy roads of life, expecting no gain, no fame, nor any fortune.
I wish you God's sweetest blessings and protection in your life always, m'friend. I pray that the Lord Jesus holds you in His loving Arms and brings comfort to your body and your spirit. I pray that many angels surround you, and when your time comes, be it a day, a month, a year, a decade, that they transport you gently, ever so gently to your eternal Home, safe at last from all pain, and all tears. Free at last to soar with the wings of an angel.
I love you, Sweet Angel Girl, my CyberTwin.
Your ever devoted buddy,
Which ever bridges you must cross,
Wherever paths may lead.
Just let me walk beside you, Dear,
and be the kind of friend you need.
Yer buddy always, Paula
Harp midi now playing for your listening pleasure.
Permission to use the heart-touching poem "You're Not Alone" granted by Sassy, of
"My Kinda Paradise." Thanks so much, Little Sister!"
Hi! I'm Dovey DooLittle....just grab one of my wings and I'll fly you back to the index page! Hold on tight now!!! WHEEEEEE.....here we go!!!
Created August, 1997 in the beautiful emerald city of Seattle by Paula. (C) All rights reserved.