A letter

Dear Friends and Loved Ones:

As I contemplated this memorial service, I felt great gratitude in my heart that each of you would be here to say goodbye to me. Many of you have shared your warmth, kindness and love with me during these last years. I want to say thank you and goodbye and share with you the lessons I have learned through my dying.

I have profoundly experienced that love is all that matters. Like many people, I occasionally got caught in my pettiness and separation, thinking I knew the right answer. I have judged others and even judged myself more harshly. But I have learned that we carry within ourselves the abundant wisdom and love to heal our weary heart and judgmental mind.

During the time of my illness, I have loved more deeply. My heart feels as if it has exploded. I do not carry anger; I feel we are doing the best we can. Judging others closes the heart and when one is dying, that is a waste of precious sharing. Life is how we stand in relationships to both ourselves and to others. Loving and helping each other is all that is important.

There is naturalness to the cycle of life and death and for whatever reason; it is my time to die, even though I am young. It is okay. It is right and natural. Life is not about how long we live, but about how we live, and I have had an exceptional life. I accept my dying as a part of the wondrous process of life. I am not afraid, on the contrary, I carry with me a profound peace and know without a doubt in my mind where I am going and am confident of those waiting for me.

My sadness is in leaving you. I will miss the deep comfort and love of gently waking up beside the love of my life, giving up our dreams of future years together. I will miss the warm and loving arms of our two precious daughters and the joy that is certain to embrace their lives as they walk into their future. I will miss the laughter and obvious love that you have all bestowed on me with such generosity and warmth.

As I lay here, I think of you all, each in your own special way, that I have loved and shared this special life with. I reluctantly give up walking on this beautiful earth, where every step is a prayer. The glistening sun on the trees, the serenity and beauty of walking in the gentle first snowfall, the sound of the water as the waves hit the shore, digging my feet in the warm sand, watching a beautiful sunset, the wonder and beauty of miracles around us every day... these are the things that I have loved.

Please do not think that I have lost the battle with cancer, for I have won the challenge of life. I have shared unconditional love. I have opened to the mystery of God and feel that divinity is all around us every day and provides us with a path on which our spirit may take flight.

When you think of me, know that my spirit has taken flight and that I have loved you.

With all my love

Vicki, your wife, your mother, your daughter, your sister, and always in my heart, your friend.