Aug 24, 2013 - 1:01 am
The first birthday since her passing, about a month ago (July 25th).
Our beloved Chen joined CSN more than 10 years ago, as a newcomer to breast cancer - as the vast majority seem to do. Most find this forum during the earliest segments of their journeys. Then, when treatment and recovery are complete - many depart. Many seem to need distance from cancer as a constant topic in order to build their 'new normal' life. All quite understandable, even to be expected.
But, Chen remained. Active both here on the BC Board, and in Chat - which put her in contact with survivors of all types of cancer. Active for over 10 years. "Paying it forward." Until recently - when her mets, chemo & meds eventually pulled her offline and away from her keyboard... much to her dismay.
She was amazingly prolific with her genuinely kind-hearted words of support & encouragement, true compassion & empathy, unique sense of humor. For anyone, everyone, all who found their way to here. Countless hours spent, immeasurable efforts... giving of herself, her heart, her soul... for more than 10 years. Unconditionally, without restraint.
Kindred Spirits, she named us. Kindred Spirits, indeed.
I wonder, and cannot honestly begin to even imagine... How many - during 10+ years - did she help, inspire, strengthen? How many, now long gone from CSN, still remember her? Hundreds? More? How many carry within themselves her oft-repeated mantras: Be Stronger Than, Not Angry At & We do what we have to do, so that we can do what we want to do. How many have shared, beyond CSN, her mantras with others? I can only wonder, because my questions cannot be answered.
She was our 50-ft. Woman. There will never, ever, be another quite like her.
Today, August 23rd, is Chenheart's birthday. Her life was a precious and cherished gift to all who knew and loved her - including me.
Kind regards, 12/25