She griggled when I met her. That’s a grin + a giggle. She pointed to her foot and said, “Shoe.” I knew I liked this kid. She was two.
She was awaiting a bone marrow transplant.
I spent ten years volunteering with pediatric bone marrow transplant patients. They gave me more than I ever gave them. The most valuable lessons of my life I learned from those children and families. I learned of love and faith and fortitude. I saw humor and resilience that made the shadows give way to light. I grappled with my own take on mortal life and spirituality. These lessons have stayed with me still. In those ten years, only one patient left the hospital alive.
It was her.
And she thrived.
She defied odds.
She never lost the griggle.
But we lost her today.
You can honor her by making a donation to the Ronald McDonald House or the National Marrow Donor Program. And please, join the National Marrow Donor Program.
Ours is a friendship of firsts.
Taste of liquor
She knew me back when my parents were married. She’s known me by three different names. She knows my ugly habits, antics, and such but loves me anyway.
But it’s more than history that glues us together. There’s no obligatory Facebook friend acceptance. Our acceptance of each other isn’t measured by bits and bytes. At times our lives have been fragmented, swooshing this way and that. Yet the puzzle pieces of our own journeys still fit together. A lifelong friendship means building bonds, drifting apart, and finding your way back. Our paths have wound in patterns that traverse the globe, yet we have always had our finger on each other’s pulse. Every time we picked up the phone it’s as if we were teenagers again, squealing and chatting into the night, solving the world’s problems and plotting our world domination.
She has always been my North Star.
It’s this friendship of firsts that is the most lasting.
Sloe Gin Fizz
2 oz Plymouth sloe gin (Brand matters here.)
1 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp superfine sugar
Add the sloe gin, lemon juice, and sugar to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Fill a tall glass (Collins glass) with ice and strain sloe gin into it. Top with club soda. Give it a gentle stir.
Enjoy being of drinking age while you enjoy this colorful beauty and don’t fear getting busted by your friend’s parents.