Wednesday, September 18, 2013


We are a community.  We are forever bonded and our bonds, the bonds formed through social media are real.

I am so sorry to share bad news but I've been worried.

I was concerned about jelebelle who blogs at Keep The Calm.  "jelebelle" is the way she signed all of her posts.  Her name is Jen.  Some of you know her.  I see your comments on her blog posts.

Jen has died.  There are tears streaming down my face as I type those words.  You see, Jen hasn't posted anything to her blog since June.  I left a few comments and over the past couple of weeks, I tried to contact her via email.  I sent out a message on twitter.

Yesterday, I received an email in response to the last comment I left on Jen's blog.  Jill, a friend who lives in Seattle and a "real world" friend, emailed me.  She provided me with her phone number, offering to give me an update on her friend. Our friend.  I knew.  As I read those words, I knew.  I spoke to Jill last night.  Jill, a complete stranger who reached out just because.  Because she was one of the champions Jen refers to in her very last post.

Jen died on July 18.  It was just weeks after her last blog post.  Jill shared what happened.  It was a rapid decline.  There was a beautiful service in a filled cathedral.  Her burial place is near a park where her 2 1/2 year old son, Milo goes to play.

Jen was 39 years old.  She was diagnosed with breast cancer and learned she was pregnant on the same day in June of 2010.  She talks about that in her blog.  She describes how pissed off she was to get a cancer diagnosis on what should have been such a happy day.  The diagnosis came first so there wasn't even a little time for her to bask in the glow of impending motherhood.

She was treated while pregnant.  Just surgery.  A unilateral mastectomy.  No chemo, no radiation.  One year later, she was diagnosed with metastatic disease.  Two years after being diagnosed with metastatic disease, Jen was stolen by breast cancer.  Another dad, now a single parent.  Another child being raised without his mama.

Jen's husband is not ready to post anything on her blog.  I asked Jill if she felt it would be okay for me to post this here.

Jill was kind enough to send me the photo used at Jen's memorial service.

Jen... you will be missed by so many of us.  You are forever loved.

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  1. oh, dear Anne Marie,

    what a heart wrenchingly sad message you've had to give us. thank you for letting us know about Jen, and extended thanks to that angel, Jill, Jen's dear friend who reached out to you to let you know about her death. my heart aches for Jen's family, especially for her husband and Baby Milo.

    at least now we know that we can pour love and our wishes for comfort and healing into the universe to help them. maybe jen will see them, arcing like the biggest, brightest rainbow, from us to them, and maybe she will smile and know that her story and how hard she tried to live is etched on our hearts and will never be forgotten.

    much love and light to you my cherished friend,


    1. Dearest Karen,

      This broke my heart. I know you were one of those who commented on Jen's blog. It was heartbreaking to learn that she is yet one more casualty of this disease. Yes, I hope her husband and Milo can feel the energy of love being sent their way. She left quite an impression on so many of us. She will be missed and never forgotten.

      And to you, how are you???


  2. Annemarie, I am so sorry. So sorry to hear of the loss of your friend... a sister in your cancer fold. A sister who it sounds like you treasured very much, along with many others. I mourn her loss too. I mourn the loss of her presence on the earth. My 41yo cousin died of breast cancer about 12 years ago or so now (how DOES the time fly by so quickly)... and her sister-in-law (her brother's wife) is dying now, as I type this, from breast cancer too. Her first grandchild was born a couple weeks ago & she prayed to see his birth. She did.

    Yes... Connie has a foundation that she started while she was alive. Roxanne has started one now too. And that is how they will live on... in addition to living on in the hearts of all who loved them. Having known them personally really has nothing to do with it, does it. It's that "sister thing".

    Love & condolences~ Andrea

    1. Yes, Andrea...

      You said it best.. It's that "sister thing" indeed.

      I am so sorry about Connie and Roxanne. Yes, they too, will now live in MY heart alongside all of the others for whom I advocate.

      Thank you for sharing the dark side of the disease that too many think is "no big deal."



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