With the next dance competition being a little over a month away, April, the owner of the dance studio, communicated some unfortunate news. Her mother, Linda, is very ill. Linda has been working at the dance studio since it opened. Linda takes good care of all of the crazy parents, like me, and our little dancing angles. I fell in love with Linda the moment I met her. Linda and I are both huge fans of the Twilight movie series, except Linda thinks Edward the vampire is the cutest and I think Jacob is way better looking =). Linda is an amazing person and has been there for all of us, all the time. Linda has always kept me in the loop about things and events and takes care of me like she always takes care of many of our kids when we are not able to be at the dance studio.
It was a little over a year ago when Linda was diagnosed with stage four cancer and was told she had a short time to live. I remember the day Linda told me about her cancer; we were all at a dance team yard sale fundraiser. During a conversation Linda casually said she was dying of cancer. The way she said it I thought she was joking so I laughed until I noticed another mother who was standing close by had started to tear up and quickly turned her back to me and Linda to cover her face. I felt horrible and I didn’t know how to handle myself. I had already put one foot in my mouth and I wanted to avoid putting my other foot in too since I tend to ramble when I am nervous and to get myself into more and more trouble. My heart stopped and my body froze. I just wanted to hug her but instead I froze up, not knowing how to respond and afraid to say anything that might be the wrong thing. I didn’t want to ask her a million a one questions so instead I just listened. As time went on Linda went though a series of treatments and somehow still managed to come to work. We were blessed when the time the doctors had given her came and went over a year ago.
Over the last couple of months many of us noticed that Linda has been getting progressively worse. Her body seems to be getting weaker and she has looked more tired; tired of being sick. I could see in her eyes the pain, both physical and emotional, that she is experiencing. I would often think about how I could help her or what I could say to her to make her laugh or feel better; but instead I choke and say nothing at all. I find myself at loss of words when I’m around her and I never built enough courage to tell her how much I respect and adore her. Some of the people in the dance studio have been helping by walking her dog or doing other little things that help her get through her day.
I was getting ready to post the blog I had originally written for today when April posted an update on Facebook letting us know that Linda was in hospice care at her home. I went back and forth about writing about Linda on my Blog; I was not sure if it would be appropriate. I talked with Charlie about it and his advice was to listen to my heart and to do what felt right. So I did.
Linda, should my words find you I want you to know that you have been in my thoughts and prayers. I know I haven’t known you for a long time, but it didn’t take long for me to see what a wonderful and caring person you are. I have really enjoyed every moment of getting to know you and am so sorry that you are ill. I would do anything to take your pain away! You have touched so many lives, both young and old, and all have been blessed by knowing you.