Some posts seem to write themselves in my head as thoughts percolate around. Then when I walk the dogs or have some quiet time the perspective and content gels. Then i write and hit publish. Today’s post was not like that as I have struggled to find the right words.
A week ago a friend died of cancer. Her funeral is today and I’m out of the country and missing the chance to say a formal goodbye. I know that Sue wouldn’t want me to miss our trip as she was always saying how smart Ron and I were to travel so much. It’s hard not to get a chance to be there with all my co-workers from over the years and form the nursing honour guard. But this post isn’t about me. It is about Sue.
Sue was a fabulous nurse but more importantly she was a wonderful wife, mother, daughter and friend. She gave so much of herself over the years in all these roles. She did them all with a smile and quiet strength. She faced cancer the same way and added dignity to her journey.
Sue started in the operating room many decades ago and was a pillar of strength for many. She had a gentle quiet touch with our patients which is so important. She was also as smart a a whip — going back to get her degree while working and having two small girls at home. I learnt a lot from her over the years. She was such a support for new staff and never forgot what it was like to start work in what can be an overwhelming environment. She had a large impact on our work morale as she never complained and did everything with a smile. She was a very dedicated nurse.
She carried all those same attributes into friendship and always had time to ask how you were doing. She was an avid dog walker and a fitness buff. I always admired the fact that she committed to that year in and year out. She liked to travel but somehow that didn’t happen as much as she perhaps wanted. She bonded via her cancer journey with a group of Dragon Boat racers — women who have shared the very difficult walk that breast cancer imparts on them.
This blog post feels like I have not conveyed my thoughts well but perhaps the best tribute I can give Sue is to go forward knowing that every day is an important day and to face it with a smile.