Friday, September 30, 2011


I know I've been absent lately, but things have happened and I haven't been able to post on my semi-regular basis. More about that later.

Around six or seven years ago, I found an old childhood friend's E-mail address on our high school's alumni site. Brigid and I had known each other a long time. We were in Brownies together and I believe we actually met for the first time in Kindergarten. That would make it around 60 years that I've known her. We even played Ginny dolls together. In fact, Brigid wanted a Ginny doll so badly and went snooping around the house before Christmas one year and found the Ginny doll her mother had bought. She would play with it in secret and then wrap it back up before her mother got home from work. On Christmas morning she acted surprised when she opened the package.

This is Brigid probably around the time we met. She's on the left...

Since Junior High she has called me Durg and I've called her Boh. For some reason we called each other by the first few letters of our last names. I can no longer recall how that happened, but when we reconnected we picked up right where we had left off. I was Durg and she was Boh.

Brigid was the class clown all through school. She had a very quick wit and I can remember laughing so hard my sides would hurt. We fooled around way too much and neither of us were very good students. However, whenever the teacher would try to catch us by asking a relevant question about what we were supposed to be studying Brigid would always know the answer. The teacher could never catch her. She was so smart. Sometimes we would have to stop her in mid conversation to have her tell us what a particular word meant. She had quite a vocabulary. To say she was an under achiever is putting it mildly.

At the end of our Junior year Brigid announced that she wanted to go to college. She went to the guidance counselor and asked to be allowed to repeat her Junior year. We all thought she was crazy. "Come on Brigid, stay with us and graduate next year." No, Brigid had made up her mind. She always thought everything through and she knew this was what she wanted. So, she ended up graduating in 1965 instead of 1964.

I know I posted this picture not too long ago. This was one of our many excursions to the Jersey Shore and Brigid is the one in the middle. Poor Boh...she had red hair and very white skin. If she wasn't covered up she'd burn to a crisp.

After high school we stayed in touch and for a while she and I both worked part time at a local grocery store. She was a full time student and I had a full time office job, but she was saving for college and I was buying a Mustang. Then in 1968 she sailed for Europe as part of her studies and a few days later I got married. Eventually, we lost touch with one another. Then maybe six or seven years ago I found Brigid's E-mail address on our high school's alumni page. I quickly wrote and she quickly replied. She still lived in New Jersey and I now lived in Texas, but we did manage to see each other a couple of times over the years.

Brigid had finished college, worked for a while, and then went on to law school. She told me one time that her mother had read in the Ladies Home Journal that law was a good career for a woman in the early 1970's. While I had kids and raised a family, Brigid had practiced law.

She had also battled breast cancer and received a stem cell transplant as part of her treatment. Needless to say, she was a wonderful support system for me the last two years as Reid battled cancer and also had a stem cell transplant.

Brigid retired almost ten years ago. She was a lawyer for the Federal Government working in the vicinity of the World Trade Center. She was working from home on 9/11 and shortly thereafter decided to retire early. I think cancer and terrorism factored into her decision.

I always enjoyed her E-mails. She was the voice of reason when I expressed my fears about Reid's treatment. She stood by my side. She never let much time go by without writing and asking how Reid was doing. Her caring E-mails and loyalty meant so much to me. I can't even begin to express how much I appreciated her support. She was there when I needed her the most. That's a very, very special friend.

All of a sudden I didn't hear from her. I wrote and never heard back. I knew she and Brian often took off on trips or cruises, so at first I wasn't too concerned. On occasion a couple of weeks might go by without any word from her, but then she'd write and say they had gone to Florida, Las Vegas, or on a cruise. When the hurricane was headed up the east coast in August I wrote again and asked if she was ready for the storm. I never heard back. I was starting to get a little concerned, so I E-mailed her last week and told her I was worried. Still no word.

Last night something told me to google her name. I did and pulled up her obituary. She had died on August 15th of a heart attack at home. The obituary said she died peacefully. For that I'm grateful, but I'm heartbroken too. I miss her. I'm glad we were able to reconnect for a while. I just wish it could have been longer. I no longer have anyone in NJ that would have seen the obituary and recognized that she was my friend, so I didn't know. Today I found Brian's business E-mail address online and wrote to him to let him know how sorry I am right now. He's certainly in my thoughts and prayers.

This is a picture of Boh taken in 2004. She's meeting my travel doll, GinnyFaith.

Good bye Boh. I'll miss you more than you'll ever know. Thank you for being such a special friend.

Now on to a couple of updates. Reid had his latest scans a couple of weeks ago and this time he lit up on the PET scan in a lymph node under his right arm. However, it was very slight and the doctor told us that it can happen to anyone with a cold, sore throat, cough, or even a scratch on the arm. Normally, it wouldn't mean much but because of his history of Hodgkin's they will keep an eye on it and he'll be rescanned in three months. He continues with the clinical trial, but we're fairly certain he's getting the placebo right now.

The same week Reid got his scan results my husband had a biopsy. He's been diagnosed with prostate cancer. On Monday we meet with his Urologist out here to see what he recommends and on Tuesday he'll be seen at MD Anderson for their take on the situation. We really need to get some kind of treatment started soon as he hasn't been feeling well at all lately.

This week we had a new floor put down in the dining room and entryway. I had ordered this floor a year ago and then my Dad died and Reid relapsed and the company was so nice about waiting. We're enjoying the new floor, and I'm glad to have it down before Jim starts any treatment.

I think I'll probably be hit and miss around here for a while. I'm hoping to catch up on some blog reading this weekend if time allows.


  1. Man it hurt to read this - it must really hurt to be living it. You have so very very very much on your plate right now.

    I am sorry for the loss of your dear friend.

    I'm sorry your hubby has prostrate cancer - hopefully they will be able to get it all out.

    And lets pray that Reid just had a cold.

    Oh Betty my dear. I am so very sorry.

    Love, prayers, and hugs,

  2. Betty, I'm so sorry to hear about your friend, Boh, and your husband. I'm sure that Jim will be in good hands and that his prognosis will be excellent. As for Reid, please keep me posted and I'll pray for him and a good outcome as well.

  3. Oh Betty, I have been thinking of you lately and wondering about Reid. I just can't believe all that has been going on in your life. I'm so sorry about your friend. What a wonderful tribute to her and your friendship in this post. I love that you have some great memories and pictures of her to cherish.

    I pray that your husband gets the treatment he needs to get better.

    Hugs & Prayers,

  4. The story and pictures of you and your friend are so sweet and melancholy...... I know this must have been so hard for you to find out the way you did.

    I'll be praying for Reid and your husband...... ya'll have been through enough!

    Yea, for new floors!

  5. Unbelievable, Betty, so much sad news. I hope Jim can start some kind of treatment soon; how awful that he feels so sick. What a wonderful picture you have of Boh at the age you met.

  6. I have been sorry to hear that you lost such a lovely friend. What a great tribute to her you shared her -- she would have loved that.

    I came to your blog to thank you for the comments you left on my blog -- so very much appreciated.

    I don't need to have kids to enjoy watching a Disney movie. For me, those movies work on so many levels, and their artistic and musical side appeals much to me. :)

    I am sure recycling is very big e.g. in Austin.

    Maybe you want to check out my Oktoberfest giveaway . It would be nice to welcome you back to my blog.

    Greetings from Munich, Germany,

  7. Oh Betty. I'm sorry.

    Sending prayers and hope and healing for your very sad heart!

  8. I am so, so sorry for all of your sadness! I will be praying for your hubby, your son and you. I, too, lost a childhood friend just last month of a heart attack and like you, only learned of it when I checked the Obits in our home town on line! Very coincidental to say the least, so I know all of your pain. I am praying things will be going better and take care of yourself so that you have strength for others. God bless and hugs, Kerrie

  9. Oh Betty what a wonderful post and tribute to your friend. I was so sad when I got to the end. My deepest condolances on your loss, losing a best friend is so very tough. I am also sorry to read of your hubby's diagnosis, you have a lot on your plate. Try and take care of you while you are taking care of the others my friend although I know that is easier said than done. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family while you go through this latest challenge,

  10. Oh, I'm so sorry about your friend. She must have been a wonderful person. I'm sure everything will be all right with Reid. To have your husband diagnosed with cancer after all you have been going through must feel like the last straw. But you will come through and you have so many friends out here. Love from Sicily. xx

  11. I'm so sarry to hear you lost such a good long time friend, Betty, but it was so nice that you were able to reconnect after so many years. That was a wonderful gift and I know you will miss her.

    I'm so sorry to hear your husband has prostate cancer but I'm hopeful that he will get the treatment he needs to beat it.

    I will keep both him and Reid --and you--in my prayers.



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