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A life well-lived

October 31, 2009

A dear friend of mine passed away last night. I am still coming to terms with it.

Michele was more than a friend to me. I was there with her when she made her decision to present full time as the woman she always knew herself to be. I was there with her when she and her spouse of 25 years decided to divorce because of that decision. I was there with her as she got her first job as a female. I was there when she told me that she could see her future – as a bright, shining light for the transsexual community, helping others to learn about this segment of the population, so often misunderstood.

This was in 2004. Soon after that, we went our separate ways, and I mostly only heard about her from mutual friends who told me about some of the things she was doing. You can read more about some of that here.

In April of this year, I heard that she was diagnosed with cancer, and I followed her on Facebook as she underwent treatments for it. I knew her as a fighter, so I had high hopes that she would beat this thing. She had a big birthday party in July, which I attended, and I got to see her again. We hugged, we danced, and we knew that our connection was strong and sure, even though our lives had gone in new directions. But I knew then that she had been physically weakened. Her spirit and spunk were as strong as ever, but the flesh was not. Even through her illness, though, she still looked radiantly beautiful.

Michele

Happy Birthday, Michele

In the past few weeks, her health had been deteriorating and I knew it was a matter of time, so I wasn’t completely surprised when I heard that she had been admitted to hospice last Friday, although I still found it heartbreaking. And last night, she left this world for something bigger, I’m sure.

It all seems so unfair to me. This woman was a leader, a mover, a shaker, a woman of action. She had gone through so many challenges to live the life she had dreamed of all of her life, and she was still going strong at the moment of her death. She deserved better. She deserved more. And yet, now that she’s gone, I can truly see that she had a life well lived. And I can only hope that this, too, is part of a bigger plan to which I am not yet privy.

I am so grateful to have been a major part of her life for awhile. I am so grateful and proud of all that she has done. She is a true inspiration to all of us to go for what we believe in with everything in us.

So please, go out today and make it matter…. for Michele, for the world, but even more so, for yourself, so that when your time comes, you can say it was a life well-lived.

Blessings upon you, Michele. You will always be in my heart.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Sherry permalink
    November 3, 2009 7:50 pm

    Yes, we certainly knew the same Michele. Thank you for your comments.

    • lindacostello permalink
      November 10, 2009 11:40 pm

      Thanks, Sherry.

      Dang, I miss her.

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