Pinky Pie

At the intersection of bitter and sweet & Me

Posted on: May 1, 2011

This is one of the hats that Kathy gave to me. It became my favorite.

At the funeral Saturday of Kathy Greene, I recognized faces I had not seen for a long time.

But that is what a funeral is – an intersection of lives – often bitter and sweet. We are happy to see old friends again and then realize how we reconnected is clearly not a time of joy. At best it is bittersweet.

Kathy and I didn’t know each other well, but we intersected a couple of times in life. The first was when our daughters, Maggie and Emily, were in the La Crosse Girls Chorus. We shared rides for our girls and others to rehearsals. The girls also got together to play in elementary school.

We intersected again at an American Cancer Society program in fall 2009 called Look Good … Feel Better. She was at the same table as I was, learning how to use makeup and hats during chemotherapy.

A cancer program is not where you want to see old friends, but we did that day.

Kathy,  who already had a couple of rounds of chemotherapy, talked about hats she had purchased that didn’t work for her. She offered to share them with me.

A week or so later, she called and brought some over.  I tried on a bunch of them. Several became the hats I wore most often during those days.

As I told her daughter Emily before the funeral, a small gesture is sometimes huge.  What Kathy did truly was huge for me. What one patient with cancer – even if it was a different kind as it was with Kathy – gives to another is belief in our abilities to keep on going when times are dark.

I didn’t see Kathy again until I ran into her at the Gundersen Lutheran Cancer Center a few months ago.  I was there with another friend who was getting a tour of the center after getting a second opinion from an oncologist.

Kathy, who had an IV attached, said simply that she was going to have a couple more treatments and then they’d see how she was doing.

All last week when I walked by her house I thought about ringing the doorbell, but I never did.  I always felt she was more private than me, which was a lame excuse.

And then I read she had died. I realized I missed my chance to return that kindness.  Maybe it would have been huge for her, too.

Thank you, Kathy. You already are missed.

Advertisements

2 Responses to "At the intersection of bitter and sweet & Me"

[…] of the center after getting a second opinion from an oncologist. … View full post on lutheran – Google Blog Search Tagged with: &amp • bitter • Intersection • Pinky • Sweet  If […]

Hey there, Pinky Pie…well, I’m knocking on your door just to say I’m thinking about you. I understand the regret you feel…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Posts by month

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 63 other followers

May 2011
S M T W T F S
« Apr   Jun »
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  

Blog Stats

  • 135,839 hits
%d bloggers like this: