Today marks the 1-year anniversary of my cousin Laura’s passing from breast cancer. She was only 39 years old and left behind a husband, a 12-year-old son and 6-year-old twins, a son and a daughter. Even a year after the fact it is hard to believe she is gone from this world. She was so vibrant, so funny, so full of life and energy, a wonderful mother, an excellent teacher, a creative and innovative thinker, and a lover of things quirky and unusual! I think of her often as I live in Indonesia because of her love for insects, lizards and animals of many kinds-she would be thrilled about the little lizards that run up and down our walls and the big dragonflies that land on our windows and on the flowers that grow in our yard.
When I was little she was my cool older cousin, and I hung on her every word and accomplishment. I distinctly remember her talking to me about going to live in a foreign country and maybe becoming a missionary-she was probably in 9th or 10th grade at the time. I remember thinking “She could do anything!”. Now it’s me living far away from home and thinking of her.
My thoughts are on her today and I’m trying to smile instead of cry when I think of her infectious laugh, her willingness to be so silly and fun with her kids, and her ability to juggle more things than it seemed possible for one human to handle, and do it with a smile. I love you Laura, I miss you, and I’m remembering you today.
If you think of it, say a quick prayer for Joe, Josh, Maggie and Miles, Laura's family, her mom and stepdad Nancy and Rick, and her brother and sister-in-law, Dan and Jenn today.