She Says… Time Should Stop

I was going to write a post today about how Owen’s new favorite game is to play hide and seek. And blah blah blah it’s so cute.

But you know what?

Bigger things are happening. Lives are beginning and ending this very second. And while I know that happens every day, while I blog away about mundane things like what Owen ate for breakfast and getting a balloon at music class and how my belly is expanding faster than I thought possible, today feels different.

Late last night, my sweet friend Bridget passed away. She and I attended a small all-girls’ school together for many years. I had my first taste of beer at a party in her basement… long before she was diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer during her senior year at Boston University. We wore long, white gowns and carried red roses together the day we graduated from high school… long before she began to think about her life in terms of months instead of years. After college graduation we both ended up in Boston and we chatted about turning her blog into a book, how she could use her heart-wrenching fight with cancer to inspire others and how my husband could shoot a documentary of her when she was healthy enough to have a baby with her amazing husband… long before she knew that she would not make it to her 30th birthday.

Bridget was a warrior. She fought cancer from the day she was diagnosed, and she fought hard. It bothers me to hear people say that she “lost” the battle against this disease, because that’s not how I would put it at all. She fought, and she won, for 9 whole years. Long past the timeline her doctors gave her. During that time she inspired thousands upon thousands of people through speaking engagements and tireless efforts to support the Susan G. Komen foundation and walks around the country. And then, when she was tired of fighting, she made the decision to stop. She traveled and savored the rest of her time with her husband and family. She didn’t lose. She won.

So although we all have “stuff” going on today, and every day, I hope you can take a moment to stop time, and think about the big things that are happening. See the forest through the trees.

And I’m not going to tell you how to spend your money, but I know what Bridget would have asked you to do. Support cancer research however you can. Donate. Walk/run/race. Share her story.



In Bridget’s last blog post that she wrote in December, she asked that we not forget her. I know that I, for one, never could. I hope you can’t either.


23 responses to “She Says… Time Should Stop

  1. Joke Vermanen

    It’s almost scary that you post this. My mom was diagnosed with breastcancer a few weeks ago. Yesterday she received the first chemo. She has at least 5 more to go.
    I’m 30 years now and I will never forget this moment where I heard the news and immediately knew that whatever happened she would not lose.
    If she would live through this, she would gain more years on earth to enjoy with us and her grandchildren. But if she would die because of this disease she would live forever with God in heaven. I wish her on earth for myself, but I would wish everyone I love a long lasting live in heaven, because which place would be more beautiful? No pain, no cancer don’t we all want that?

  2. I’m so sad and sorry. What a warrior your friend Bridget was. Thinking of you and all of her friends and family who will feel this loss. – Nancy

  3. Kate, I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend. Thank you for helping to continue her fight even now after she is gone.

  4. Angie All The Way

    I’m so sooo sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. I will say that this post is quite possibly the best eulogy anyone could hear at her funeral. I don’t know her, but wow, I’m so proud of her…

  5. I’m so sorry. She is beautiful and her fight was amazing. Cancer is so horrible. So awful. It touches too close to home, for everyone. I hope you can keep her alive with in your memories.

  6. Wow. Her last post was simply amazing. What a courageous and peaceful woman. Thanks for sharing her story.

  7. taylorjacobson

    This made me cry, in Starbucks. Not cry like a tear welled in my eye. Cry cry. And I’m so grateful for that. It’s too easy to just glaze over sad feelings instead of really feeling them. Thank you Kate for sharing Bridget’s story. Keep spreading the love. Here’s some from me to you 🙂

  8. I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend. Your beautiful words made me go and read her last post and now I’m sat on the metro home crying. What an amazing woman. I hope you continue to cherish the fantastic times you shared together. Thank you for sharing her story.

  9. Thanks for sharing. This is a story that is all too close to my family’s lives. What an amazing woman. Thinking of you today…and all those touched by Bridget.

  10. I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend Kate. She was a true fighter!

  11. Kate, I am so sorry for your loss. Bridget sounds like an amazing person, thank you for sharing her story with us. Thinking of you all.

  12. Oh I am so sorry for your loss! Cancer sucks. What an amazing story your friend has, what an amazing person to share & fight & do all those things like that. These things hit us hard and that’s okay. It doesn’t make sense (((hugs)))

  13. Your friend was an amazing woman. Put me in tears. Sending hugs and prayers to her friends and family.

  14. Kate, I am so sorry for your loss. Your friend sounds like such an inspiration and I am so sorry for Bridget’s family and friends. She sounds like an unforgettable young woman, taken much too soon. Sending hugs across the miles.

  15. Kate – my goodness. I’m taking deep breaths right now, and feeling into gratitude, and struggle, and family and priorities. Thank you for sharing as courageously as you do. Rock steady. Love and light. keith

  16. What an incredible person Bridget was. She has definitely left that legacy she hoped for. Thank you for writing such an important post and spreading her message.

    When I first graduated, I worked as a physiotherapist on a radiation/oncology floor. Those 12 months working with those patients forever changed my outlook on life. Sure, I get wrapped up in the superficial crap from time to time but it’s stories like Bridget’s that reminds me of my time on 6 West and brings me back to what’s truly important.

    My condolences to you and her family.

  17. Kate – I am so sorry to read of your loss but so touched by the story of your sweet friend and your rememberance of her. May you and all who loved her find comfort and peace at this difficult time. I have a feeling she will be indeed be remembered.

  18. Kate, I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend. Thank you for sharing her beautiful story with us. Lots of love to you and her family.

  19. I’m so sorry for your loss. She sounds like an incredible woman.

  20. I’m so sorry for the loss of such a dear friend. She was a true fighter and has left quite the legacy. Thank you for sharing her story.

  21. I not only CAN’T forget Bridget, I WON’T!
    I CHOOSE not to forget her! Her life, her love and her passion! Bridget won a life many have never and will ever experience no matter their years of age! Though we never met personally, we share more than a passion. We may appear unchanged on the outside, but inside there is a fierce warrior in control of our destiny. Whether we choose to use our time publicly fighting, or cuddled in the arms of our loved ones we are the WARRIOR nonetheless!
    I’m sorry that ALL her wishes didn’t come true…to have a child, to be a grandmother, to find a CURE…but I’m not sure WE LOST anything! I feel that would be to negate her memory. With Bridget Spence in our lives we have nothing but to gain!

  22. I am so sorry. What a beautiful life and story.

  23. So sorry about your friend. What an incredible loss. I watched both videos and was so impressed with her positivity in what she had to endure over the last 9 years. I agree with you and believe that she did, in fact win.

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