Monday, February 3, 2014


I have mentioned before that one of my good friends is dying of cancer, sooner than later. So far the news is bad but not worst and there's no real sense for how long she has.

Firstly, thanks a million to everyone who's commiserated with me. It is awful and it hurts my heart to know her family (4 kids, oldest is 12) will be without her too soon.

It's been very moving to hear how positive she is though, despite knowing her prognosis. She's just stayed so hopeful and thankful for every day she gets. It's a great reminder that this life can be way too short and that today is pretty awesome, no matter what mess is happening.

So I made this irrational and expensive choice this afternoon that I'm going in person to visit her and her family for a few days. Little Monster is going to come with too. This means flying and renting a car and oh my scary but important.

We also decided that instead of birthday presents, Little Monster is requesting donations to my friend to help her afford the expenses that come with leaving the hospital when she's ready/able/allowed. Right now she's been in for a couple weeks and she's lost all below the waist motor function so she'll need a variety of things to be able to be home.

My kid is considering doing the same for her upcoming birthday too. Often I feel like she is in this totally selfish phase and then she wants to send all her "give to others" money to my friend to help her out and is considering skipping birthday gifts to help too. Sneaky surprising kids, learning things when we aren't looking.

I'm hoping that I'm being sensible and choosing a priceless opportunity over most of a month's rent. In the long term a little more debt is a drop in the bucket (that's a depressing thought... oof...) and this is it. There is no other time beyond this to go visit.

I read this interesting piece about this couple and their bunch of cats and I was reminded of the time we decided to spend a couple months' worth of rent on fixing up our cat. The broken jaw cost us thousands to repair plus hundreds in fancy food and meds after the surgery, but zie is a happy and healthy cat today 3.5 years later and I'm absolutely glad we spent that money. I guess it's an important factor to consider what we're getting from our loving relationships (even with our pets) as compared to what we're getting out of our financial stability.

In the long run, am I going to regret splurging and going to see my friend one last time? Nope. It's worth the leap to ditch financial solvency and to go see her. Sometimes it's worth it to save your cat even if it costs thousands. Visiting with Little Monster's awesome auntie is priceless and I'm glad I decided to take the leap and I intend to be glad every time I'm eating rice and beans in the coming months to pay for it. I'll probably be crying too but that's a side effect that's unavoidable.


  1. I'm so sorry to hear about your friend. I absolutely think it makes sense to create some debt if that is what is necessary to see her. I also think it's amazing that your children are donating their "presents" to the family. I hope that my child would do the same, given the circumstances.

    Abiding with you.

  2. This is definitely one of those situations where it's money well spent, even if you're on the edge of broke. Death is so cruel in that you never get that time back. It's priceless. I'm glad you've found a way to make it work for you to go visit your friend.

  3. Firstly, I am so so sorry about your friend. I really truly think you are making the right decision. My husband and I have luckily always been on the same page with this sort of thing. Somethings may seem crazy and may be expensive.. too expensive, but sometimes, in the big scheme of things, it is just worth it.. it is just the right thing to do. What a great idea for Little Monster's birthday and how sweet that the Kid is thinking of doing the same. Thinking of you and hoping your visit helps both you and your friend and her family during this tough tough time. So sorry.