Fran was my Mom’s best friend….for her entire life. They met at the Pentagon in their first jobs when they were barely out of their teens. They celebrated their youth in wild and crazy ways before marriages, babies, and life got in the way. They would laugh together about their adventures and escapades well into their golden years. Fran was one of the people that could make my Mother dissolve in childish giggles.
My Mom and Fran were huge John F. Kennedy fans. They stood together in the freezing cold on that January Day in our Nation’s capital, and swooned at his inauguration as the youngest and most handsome (according the them) president ever elected up until then. President Kennedy had a physical fitness campaign to walk 50 miles. My earliest memory of her was the day my Mother, Fran, and I set out in Washington DC to do this. I think I was about six or seven years old. I remember carrying a little bag which contained an apple to eat, and unbeknownst to them, a knife to protect us, and string to tie up the bad guys.
Both my Mom and Fran lived on the edge of history in their respective jobs at the Pentagon, bumping into figures that would change the course of the world: Robert McNamara, Robert Kennedy, Military Generals, and Heads of State. They were there during the Cuban Missile Crisis and an assassination of a President. The two of them kept closed lips, resisting my endless prodding and questions, about the secrets of their days on that stage.
Together they survived the dips in life, the loss of a child, divorces, deaths, and disappointments. Their friendship was a buoy that forever sustained them. It clearly demonstrated to me the importance of this fragile gift in our world. Fran was my first call when my Mother became sick. She was my most difficult call when my Mother died.
With the loss of my Mother, Fran became my surrogate. I love her. I love the fact that she is the keeper of memories of people that are no longer in my life. She is an anchor and a touch stone to a life that I remember, but is no longer here. Her wisdom guides me. Her faith inspires me. She, without my even realizing it, has become my mentor. I treasure the fact that I mean something to her as well.
This week I found out that Fran has breast cancer and will soon be having surgery. She is 83 and in her words has lived a good life, and I believe that she has indeed. I want her to have more of it to live. I am asking you to please pray for her healing and her peace from fear, my Friends. Add her to lists of other people’s prayers as well. I believe that prayer is our most powerful medicine of all.
“Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.” ~ Matthew 18:19