Monday, August 28, 2006


Dear Jan,

Someone said that "the only way we know we know we haven't failed on this side of the divide is when you make a list of your friends". By this measure, your life Jan, is a total success. Your life has touched so many people; through the years you have cultivated so many deep friendships; you have invested time and energy, and now in your time of need, many of your friends have been there for you. The satisfaction of been cared for like this has no equal.

It's splendid to see the freedom and familiarity you have with some of your friends. The other day while we were in Lindsay, you just walked into one of your friends' home without much protocol. I don't know if they were gracious because they know how Jan is, or maybe they have this friendship with you that goes beyond conventions, that embraces you like one of the family.

You express so much joy and are so moved when I read for you the supporting emails from your friends or the comments in the blog. I can close my eyes and imagine the happy interactions you had with these friends. It's so refreshing to your heart to hear from those who count you as their friend. Your satisfaction written all over your face is so contagious. One day, when you have your writing skills re-installed, you will be able to share with them the value of their notes and the value of their support and love.

You were very pleased to see the responses so far to the invitation to attend the benefit dance in Orillia that your cousin is organizing in November 4. One of your former students is planning to attend accompanied by her mother! I hope in this event you get a chance to see friends from the various cities where you have lived, the communities to which you belong, and the places where you have worked. I will not be surprised to see there people who do not know you, but who have heard about you through the blog or other common friends and love you anyways.

You are rich by the number of friends you have Jan. Without their help, we would not have been able to navigate through these troubled waters. As the Beatles said: "Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends".

Several friends have set time aside to come and visit you every week for an hour or so. It is a concrete commitment to walk through these days with you. They are teaching us that friendship is sacred and also to be worn everyday. "No one has greater love than He who is willing to give his life for his friends" said Jesus. They are giving of their precious time to be with you. I feel honoured by them and you feel valued.

May your friends know that their love is highly treasured by you.


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