The butterfly effect
Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Many months ago I came across Mom2acat's sparkpage and was immediately captured by her story - battling very advanced cancer. She showed so much grace, strength, and ... I guess, serenity ... in her posts. I marveled and admired anonymously from afar. I just could not imagine being so brave in her situation. I never commented on her blogs because words seemed so inadequate.
About a month ago I finally left a comment, I think more for myself than for her. It felt good to articulate my admiration for her, and how witnessing her courage in facing unimaginable difficulties gave perspective to my life and a deeper appreciation for the people I love.
I kept visiting Mom2acat's page, but her blog posts became less frequent. She arranged for hospice care. And today, I learned from her friend's post that she passed away nearly two weeks ago.
Life online is a strange thing. While we are all real life strangers, there's a freedom to reveal ourselves here that may not be possible in real life. And, it's possible for an online stranger to impact us in completely unexpected ways. I will never really get to know Shari Larsen, aka Mom2acat, but today I joined her large group of mourning online friends. I'm glad that she's no longer in pain; I am glad she had loved ones with her at the end. But I am still so very sad for a life cut short much too soon.
And I can't help imagining so many other Sparkers who have been as moved as I by Shari's life. And I think that many of us will hug our kids a little more often, will compliment our friends a little bit more, will be a little more patient with strangers - because we are just so very lucky to be able to do so. I think of Shari's memory creating subtle ripples through the ether, into all of our lives, and changing us every so slightly - or some, much more than slightly. It's like the butterfly effect, and Shari's our butterfly.