We Can Rebuild Her
Better than she was before… Better, Stronger, Happier. A Breast Cancer Journal

Happiness Is…

Long, strong friendships.

Bill

In a crowded Calculus lecture hall, first year at Waterloo, I spied a gangly guy in a fedora. In the twenty-six years since then, Bill and I have covered a lot of ground.

We made it through school, we braved bears on both Canadian coasts, we hitched a freighter to Labrador, biked past icebergs and camped among braying elk and screeching racoons. We drank a lot of coffee. We skied, we biked, we hiked, we drove.

We grew up. We stayed friends.

And what a friend. Bill has brightened our days throughout this challenge with delicious home cooked meals, healthful gifts and weekly visits. He’s subjected himself to gruelling afternoons of Life, Clue and Twister with Lucy and Bayla. And he’s turning the winter of their mom’s chemo into our girls’ first season of thrilling cross-country skiing adventures.

Happiness is my long, strong friendship with Bill Flanagan.

Jay

On July 1st, 1993, as we giddily embarked on a 7,550 km bike ride across Canada, I was greeted by the beaming smile, hand-painted Winnie-the-Pooh helmet and lime green cycling jacket of my soon-to-be best friend, Jay.

In the sixteen years since our cross-country meeting, Jay and I have survived headwinds, sunburns and soaked tents along the Icefields Parkway, the B.C. Gulf Islands and, scariest of all, rural Ontario. Our friendship has stretched to accomodate her adventurous years in Asia and my consuming years of early motherhood. We’ve skied, biked and skated. We’ve ranted and raved.

And our dependable weekly evenings of food, drinks and celebration-or-venting have kept me sane when little else could.

In October, Jay assured me, “We are going to get you through this.” With her weekly visits, her healing connections, her delicious home cooked meals and her weekend getaways for Luba, I know she’s absolutely right.

Happiness is my long, strong friendship with Jay Schmidt.

More Happiness here.

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Andrea Posted by Andrea January 23, 2010

January 23, 2010 at 6:42 am.

12 comments

  • flanbil

    Wow, wasn't expecting that when I logged on! I'm touched. By the way, good thinking to get the books behind us, makes us look smart :)

  • Jay

    Like my co-star, I too am very touched. Thank you! I know we'll continue to have as many good times over the next 16 years!

  • http://idreamincolors.com/ Nico

    Wow, I had no idea you had done a cross-country bicycle ride. That is great! I'd like to do something similar sometime.

  • DraftXRider

    Wonderful tribute! Happiness IS long, strong friendships — thank you for sharing this and reminding me of the long, strong friendships in my life! (Colleen)

  • http://www.WeCanRebuildHer.com Andrea Ross

    Thanks for following our journey, Colleen. And for sharing Jay with me!

  • Anonymous

    Wonderful tribute! Happiness IS long, strong friendships — thank you for sharing this and reminding me of the long, strong friendships in my life! (Colleen)

  • http://www.WeCanRebuildHer.com Andrea Ross

    Thanks for following our journey, Colleen. And for sharing Jay with me!

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