I moved to North Conway, NH at seventeen, and she went off to college at URI. I was learning how to tattoo and pierce, and I pierced her eyebrow. I saw that she had two tattoos, outlines of moons on her upper arms. Honestly I can't remember if I did them or not! My memory is so great yet so poor at times... We had some more visits and correspondence, but we were doing our own things. I moved to the Virgin Islands and went wild for a bit. She went to Belize and was doing scholarly stuff. Cell phones weren't extremely prevalent at the time. We lost touch.
I always wondered about Rebecca through the years. I looked for her on Facebook and googled her. I found her blog years ago. She was doing some super spiritual stuff. She seemed into it. I was proud of her. I wanted to get in touch with her, but I couldn't really find her. I hadn't known she didn't use her last name anymore. Nor did I seem to ask the right friends.
It wasn't until I saw a post two Saturday nights ago, that I found out what she had been up to. A mutual friend had posted that she had gotten cancer too. Yet her lung cancer had progressed to stage 4 by the time she got the diagnosis when she was 35 weeks pregnant. A year and a half after that, she died.
Whoa... My heart was instantly broken. I couldn't focus. Drawing was impossible. Luckily her husband wrote a blog about the whole experience. Of course I read it through the night and into the next day obsessively until I was finished. I reread parts. It was a great peek into her life and compelling story. It's so sad yet inspiring.
She was a true warrior. She wrote a detailed letter expressing how she had come to terms with her inevitable, impending death. It brought tears and comfort to me. I've never known someone to express so much understanding and acceptance of death at such a young age.
Really though... We all are birthed, will live- grow and flourish; Then someday we all die. It's not a surprise. It's is the absolute truth and guarantee in life. Yet we are so afraid of death. Maybe more bummed out because FOMO, fear of missing out. Not to mention being there for your family.... It seems like she picked an equally awesome person as herself to raise her child. Yet still I feel horrible that another mother is taken from her baby due to the Big C.
I cannot help but wonder why this happened. Why her? Was there radon in her home? She lived a healthy life. Sure we partied in our teens, but I'm pretty sure she quit all that in her early twenties. To put it simply... It seems like she lived a pretty wholesome, clean, organic eating, yoga doing, nature loving, balanced, low impact on the environment, and God loving life... I cannot accept that there is a reason behind this. No, not everything happens for a reason. Bad things happen to people and even especially good people like Rebecca. Unfortunately she got cancer and died from it leaving her husband and baby behind, by there is no
reason why. It just sucks.
Now we grieve. In her honor, friends and I plan to get together to light paper lanterns and send them to fly over the waters where she seemed to feel safe and at home. We plan to do this on the fall equinox because it seems fitting. If you're interested in reading about this wonderful persons life you can do so here: http://www.templeofthewaters.org/mustard-seed/