Monday, May 25, 2009


I used to sit on the patio every morning reading my devotions. I loved being outside waiting for the birds to wake up and sing to me. It was quiet and cool except for the traffic on the nearby highway. In addition to my quiet time, I looked forward to a visit from my next door neighbor, Dee. Her husband Vic and our neighbor on the other side Bob, went to Burger King every morning for coffee. The guys brought coffee back to their wives. When Vic left with Bob, Dee would walk over and to sit on the patio with me. We shared a love for dogs. The love of her life is Reece, a dapple long haired dachshund. When Reece and my West Highland Terrier Bailey got together, they tore through the field. They took turns chasing each other, barking, tails wagging and running as hard as they could run. We laughed and yelled like we were watching a football game. Dee loved being one of my "first readers". She waited, sometimes not so patiently for another chapter of the manuscript I was working on. She would email me with questions about what was going to happen next? We used to send each other email several times a day, and laugh that we could have just as easily opened the window and yelled. Dee was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder two years ago, which was treated with chemotherapy. She had a rigorous schedule to follow. The chemo left her weak and most times with no appetite. I did my best to keep them supplied in desserts and sometimes dinner. After a few rounds of chemo, Dee had to be transfused. This season (October to May) they weren't able to travel to Florida. She had to stay in New York for treatment. It wasn't unusual not to hear from Dee for a week or two, because she was hospitalized for more transfusions. I would wait, and get the usual two or three emails a day. The emails continued to get further and further between. Her sister-in-law who lives here in Florida, very near by, told us that Dee was doing just fine, but that she was depressed. I remember thinking, of course she's depressed. Who wouldn't be. In all her emails, Dee assured me they would be coming to Florida in June. That's when her treatments would be over. She consistently reminded me "we'll see each other again." For whatever reason, Dee didn't want any of us to know how ill she really was, even her family. I learned yesterday the rare blood disorder was finally diagnosed as leukemia. As I write this blog, with tears in my eyes, I finally realized what Dee has been telling me for the past six months. "We'll see each other again." Dee passed away yesterday. Yes, Dee, We will see each other again.


Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I'm so sorry for your loss, Katt. I know Dee is happy, but I also know that being separated from a good friend is difficult. It's comforting to know you'll be seeing her again, I bet.

Kathryn Neff Perry said...

Thanks Joy. I know she's dancing with the angels.