I visited with Dani a few days ago and she asked me to do a guest post about our time together that day. First, by way of minor introduction- Dani and I met about 10 or 11 years ago. We served in young women's together and that is when we got to know each other. Neither one of us grew up going to young women's so we just figured things out together. I helped her with her wedding preparations and then she and John moved away to start their married life. We were out of touch for a few years and then reconnected several years ago. One thing we both have in common is that we are tell it like it is kind of girls and are not afraid to ask and answer the tough question that come up in our conversations:)
When I went to visit Dani she already had two visitors one of whom rubbed oils on her hands and feet hoping to provide her some relief- it was a very tender and sweet moment to watch. After her other friends left we had our time to chat- and chat we did. I saw a peace in her eyes and told her about my observations during this journey. We don't see each other much so when we do any differences are so noticeable. I've seen her as a fighter, I've seen her angry, I've seen her hopeful about different treatments, I've seen her feel guilty thinking she should be better or do better, and finally I've seen her at peaceful acceptance.
We talked about hope and how as people we tend to focus on the exception- the 1 or 2% that something works for and then if it doesn't happen to us we feel less than somehow. How when we do this it robs us of hope, joy, and peace. We talked about a healthy kind of hope that looks for the good during the journey. I've seen her have both kinds and can assure you the second resonates in her whole being.
We talked about prayers and how we often are praying for the wrong thing- the miracle we think we want or should have and then when that isn't answered we ask why me, what did I do wrong? We talked about the power of prayers of strength, prayers of comfort, prayers for understanding, prayers for peace-
We talked about miracles and how she has had so many by way of time to prepare, people met during the journey, a faith deeper than she expected, the uncertain knowledge of what really matters in this life, truly knowing how much she means to people, the gift of her family and the care they have given her- really it goes on and on.
I asked her if she was afraid- she answered honestly and said a little but not in an overwhelming or scary way.
It was hard for me to leave that day but I found comfort in what I saw in my friends eyes- a certain peace and love that left me knowing in my bones she is ready for whatever is to come- she is at peace with all of it and I cling to that- the peace that is there for all of us to have if only we open ourselves up to ask and receive it-
To close I will share her one request- that is that we- her friends and family do not forget about her husband,son, and daughter. That when time is passing and we are all moving forward with life we will stop and make time for play dates, dinners, phone calls, and whatever else we are inspired to do. I assured her that we will:)
I love you- my sweet, funny, loud, and courageous friend!