This has been a rough couple weeks for us. My good friend Kjersten passed away on July 14th. She was only 30 years old. I still don’t know what to say to make anyone who didn’t meet Kjersten know how amazing she was. It was also the longest funeral I’ve ever been to; almost three hours. My mother-in-law, Michelle, went to the funeral in Iowa with me. It’s funny how little things remind me of her; how my planner can just pop open and there is a date I had with her. How my phone will go straight to her name. I hope to never bury another friend at such a young age.
I think of my grief and I can’t begin to imagine what her husband, Travis, is going through. Or her mom and dad, brother and sister. Thankfully, her death has made me reevaluate my life. I’ve decided I have it pretty good. 🙂 I know that she always told her loved ones how much she cared and always gave you a hug when you left. I have a wonderful husband, amazing family, job I love, puppies to kiss goodnight and the freedom to do what I choose. Our bills are paid, we have a nice house to live in, cars to drive everyday and things that make us happy. I am hoping to do a lot of reorganizing of my priorities. Kristofor and I are planning a road trip to see Andrew in Colorado in August and then stop in the Black Hills on our way home. Kjersten said it perfect, “The work will always be there, but lunch is lunch.”
Me, Amy, Kjersten and Melissa in April after our overnight scrapbook event (none of us showered before coming to see Kjersten in CCU). Kjersten was supposed to be with us in Pickwick. This was our first scare and realization that we didn’t have much time left together.
This picture also reminds me of Kjersten and I joking about her having hair. For the duration of the two years I knew Kjersten, she was on chemo or just finished chemo etc, so I never knew her with hair.
Kjersten has a blog that followed her through her five-year battle with gastroesophageal cancer. If you’d like to read more about this amazing friend I lost, visit her blog at caringbride.org.
I am also participating in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life in Houston, Minnesota on August 6-7th. For more information or to donate visit my Relay for Life page!