Find a bit of beauty in the world today. Share it. If you can’t find it, create it. Some days this may be hard to do. Persevere. ~Lisa Bonchek Adams
Lisa Bonchek Adams died Friday night, at home surrounded by her family. She was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006 when she was 36 years old. In 2012, she learned that her cancer had metastasized to her lymph nodes and bones. She was a blogger and active on Twitter, where she wrote about living with cancer. She was honest about her experience in the hopes it might help others, was an advocate for herself but also for others through her Memorial Sloan-Kettering research fund. She left behind three kids and a husband, the most adorable Corgi, a gorgeous garden, and many people who love her.
I didn’t know Lisa personally, but I know some of her friends, followed her, read her blog and her tweets, was encouraged by her, and wished her the best. I was wishing so hard that she’d get to see another spring, but also knew she’d been very sick recently, was struggling. She reminded me so much of Kelly. And Ann. And Heather. And because that gets me thinking about cancer, I can’t help but revisit the loss of my Obi and sweet Dexter too.
Every death reminds me how important it is to show up for my life, to keep my heart open, to all of it — tender and terrible, beautiful and brutal. It inspires me, encourages me to keep going, to not give up. Just two weeks ago, Lisa tweeted, “Make the most of this day. Whatever that means to you, whatever you can do, no matter how small it seems.”
That’s my plan for this day of rest, to “make the most of this day.” That’s going to mean some remembering, some grief and sadness, but also deep gratitude. I’m going to do the laundry, sweep the floors, change all the clocks, make a salad, and whatever other chores there might be. I’m also going to read and listen to a dharma talk from Susan Piver, spend some time with Eric and take another long walk with the dogs. I’m going to be gentle with myself, and with others. I’m going to do the best I can, “no matter how small it seems.”