We now have a very special angel watching over us.
I'm not sure how to do this post. I know the picture above alone will make it so at least my dad can't look at my blog, but it's the perfect picture of her.
6 years ago, Paige was diagnosed with breast cancer. 3 weeks ago, she lost her battle with it. It was something I NEVER thought would happen. Never. She was a warrior - and I don't use that word lightly.
Breast cancer has a 95% survival rate, especially when caught as early as hers was. At one point she was in remission, and there was a 2% chance of it returning - it did. There are many people that are considered one in a million - I'm not exactly sure how the math works, but I'm pretty sure these odds actually PROVE she is one in a million. I always knew I was lucky to have her as a sister. Even more, I always knew I was even luckier to have a friend like her.
She was my ultimate go to girl. I can't count the number of times in the last 3 weeks that I've had something come up that I needed to tell her about, or get her perspective on, or just hear her laugh. I don't have any idea how I'm supposed to live my life without her, but I'll learn, we all will.
All I wanted for Christmas was Paige. I got her perfume (thanks, babe), I wear her clothes as hugs every day. Our camera broke earlier this year and she had the foresight to get us one for Christmas. I wish I had the foresight to have taken more pictures of us together. In the future, I want to take more pictures. She continues to inspire me.
I know the faithful are not called home before their time. I keep thinking I could have handled her being a little less great if it meant she could stay with us longer. She was the best aunt, she was the best friend, she was the best big sister, she was the best wife, she was the best daughter, she was the best missionary - I think that's why she was called home.
Everything she did was right.
I love these pictures of her - she looks so healthy, and bright, and fun. That's who she was.
It's getting to the point where I can be happy again and soak up the splendor of my family every day. I know I'll never be OK with the way things happened, but I know it's not up to me. I know the difficulty I face and she wasn't my wife or my mother. I know as the prayers fade it will be harder for all of us and my heart goes out to James and Esme whose world has completely changed.
It is my challenge now to make the best of this life here, keeping in mind her legacy. It will be interesting to find the balance in remembering her, remembering my family and doing what is in their best interest. Sweet, sweet Esme has quickly jumped to the top of my priorities. She will know how wonderful her mother was. More than anything else out of this situation, she unknowingly has become a major target of my love.
I look forward to the challenge.
I wasn't totally convinced that the "better place" was really all that much better than here. I know it is now - because she is there. In our family prayers at night we ask Heavenly Father to tell her that we love her. I know she knows, but I just want her to be reminded.
To all those who have sent me and my family love and support - I thank you, I truly thank you. I haven't been able to respond as I feel I should, but I want you to know, it is appreciated more than I can express, and more than you can ever know. I also recognize it's not just me and my family who have suffered a great loss - and my heart goes out to all of you whose life she has touched, which I know is a great many.
Breast cancer - you picked the wrong family to mess with. You are going down.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Posted by O'Leary O'Family at 1:42 PM