Thursday, April 7, 2011

For A Friend's Smile

I wish we lived in a world where cancer research was fully funded.

Since we don't we need to support the foundations that do the best work. The LUSTGARTEN FOUNDATION is one of those groups. 100% of the funds they collect go to research to find a cure for pancreatic cancer - one of the deadliest cancers there is.

I have mentioned my neighbors before. Especially the family next door - with the funny guy Hope calls Pop Pop and the regal woman whose grandchildren call her Mamour and who my son thinks is one of the most beautiful older women.

One of the sons in this family is married to a pretty smart classy woman who takes amazing photos. She's also mom to the sweet maltese Jack whom I have featured on my photo blog. She is now also Mom to a beautiful baby boy with a smile that lights up the world - I wish I had asked her permission to show a photo of him.

Years ago I was in my kitchen when I heard the loveliest laugh and the most wonderful accent - an accent that reminded me a bit of my grandmother. I looked out just in time to see the flash of a big smile and a cascade of blonde hair get into a car and drive off.

That was the first time I saw Irene. I learned that she was Mom to my neighbors daughter-in-law.

Over the years I would run into Irene from time to time. She always looked so glamorous and excited. She was always laughing. Her daughter and I share photos we are proud of and Irene always jumps off the photo. She managed to subdue whatever surrounded her with her own light.

Irene fought a brave and graceful battle with Stage IV pancreatic cancer for over two years. During that time I visited her and we would talk about how wonderful our children are. She would tell me stories about Poland and I would tell her the stories my grandmother told about Russia. She beat the odds for as long as she could.

I wish she could have been here to meet her latest grandchild yet I feel she knew who he would be and has passed on to him the quick bright smile she was famous for. Her light continues on.

Irene's family will be participating in one of the many fundraising walks taking place on May 15. You can learn all about it on their page HERE

I will also leave the link on my sidebar.

I know money is tight and there are so many causes that need support. I also know that it is becoming more and more apparent that if we don't help each other then nothing will get done.

Most importantly remember to smile - big and bright and often. And send one out into the universe for Irene ...



The shortest distance between two people is a smile. ~Author Unknown

19 comments:

Ron said...

"She managed to subdue whatever surrounded her with her own light."

Irene sounded like a very special person, Dianne. Just from looking at her photo, I can tell.

I will head over to the link you shared with us and do whatever I can to help.

"Most importantly remember to smile - big and bright and often. And send one out into the universe for Irene ..."

*smiling out into the universe for Irene*

X ya, dear lady!

Jeni said...

You always write the most beautiful tributes that change a person's thoughts about the tragic course of diseases like cancer -the ability to see light out of a world of darkness. And a smile does light the world at least for the moment anyway, doesn't it?

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

What a beautiful tribute. I know you miss her. Cancer is an aweful thing~
<><

nitebyrd said...

She does look "lit from within", a very beautiful woman.

I'll hit up the link when I'm home this weekend. Thank you for sharing the story and the link.

Reb said...

What a beautiful tribute Dianne.

Lily Hydrangea said...

Such an amazing post Dianne, & a touching ode to a what sounds like one of those bright lights of a human being that are so nice to be around.
I am going to investigate the link now.

Daryl said...

May she rest in peace ... hugs to you Nana, hugs to you.

Knight said...

You are such a lovely human and you are right, Irene does glow in the photos.

Mike said...

"pancreatic cancer"

Bummer. That's what my dad died of.

Hilary said...

A beautiful tribute, Dianne. I'm so sorry for your loss. May her smile journey ever on.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I feel as if I knew Irene. You have written a beautiful tribute to your friend. Thanks for the link.

Jackie said...

She sounds so lovely. I bet she loved those chats with you about your kids.

Tracy said...

Dianne,
That was beautiful; your words so heartfelt. I will definitely be saying a prayer for Irene...she is lovely!

Au and Target said...

Irene sounds like a nice person. Wouldn't it be nice if they found a preventative for all cancers? It may be on the cards soon from what I read.

ds said...

Beautiful tribute to a truly beautiful woman. Having known several people who succumbed to pancreatic cancer, I can appreciate what her family--and you--have been and are going through. I am sorry for your loss.

Happy Elf Mom said...

Wow she's pretty! I hope Irene's family is doing ok.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

So sorry fir your loss, my dear...Pancreatic Cancer is such a mean mean disease---I have known and lost quite a few people to this very insidious type of cancer...
Irene looks so vibrant and beautiful in that picture, Dianne....
I will go to thart link, right now!

Rambling Woods said...

Oh that is a nasty one...a lovely tribute.. I wish we were a nation of people who really took care of our own.. our children, our elderly, our sick...but...shit...makes me so angry.. and then I cry and start again.. lovely post...I am so sorry.. Michelle

jabblog said...

What lovely memories of a very special lady.