She passed away on the 3rd. Just one day shy of her 44th birthday. I am so sad and praying for her family.
Valerie and I met through marilu.com back in the early 2000's. We chatted on the message boards and when Marilu planned a spa vacation in Ojai CA in 2005, I decided to go. I hadn't met any of these people in person, just talked to them on the message boards, but they felt like family. Valerie and I decided to meet up at the airport in Burbank and share a rental car to get to the spa.
It's such a funny story, I am driving and Valerie has the map. We are LOST! I mean we had been all over Burbank and couldn't figure out how to get to the highway we need. I look at her and say - "Well, what does the map say?" She just smiles great big and tells me that she is reading the map, but she might not be the best person for it. I ask her why? She says, I am dyslexic! I started laughing and could not stop. Tears rolling down my face. No wonder we were so lost ;)
That is just Valerie! We had a BLAST at the spa and stayed in touch through the years. It was an on and off relationship, we might go a full year without talking to one another, but when we did talk again, it was just like old friends.
She was so caring and generous to a fault! We laughed and cried together. She loved high heels and cupcakes..... LOVED them!
She got sick a few years ago and called me up to talk about it. We cried and of course I had to throw my opinion in there. I didn't hear from her for a few months and then she got back to me and told me she was going to take my advice. I was excited to help her. Many months later, she told me I saved her life. I told her to shut her mouth. I didn't do anything, SHE did it.
She fought a brave battle and did what she could and in the end, there was nothing left to do. I hadn't talked to her in about 2 months. I wish we could have had one more conversation. So many things left unsaid. How do you prepare for the end? What do you say to someone at the end of their life. I did call and leave her a voice mail. I do hope that she was able to listen to it and know that she was loved. I can also only hope that she knew how many people cared about her and how she touched their lives.
We had planned to get together again this summer at the lake house. Sadly, that will not happen and I am so sorry for that!
RIP my dear Valerie! I'm going to wear my heels and eat a cupcake just in your honor! Love you and miss you already!