Posted by: notsofancynancy | July 26, 2013

The Death of (another) Friend

Once again I have been hit with the death of a friend. I don’t know how to handle this death and it has hit me hard.

She would kill me if she knew I used this picture, but it is one of many fun times

She would kill me if she knew I used this picture, but it is one of many fun times we shared

In 2002 I was working for a family owned business which did payroll for their four moving companies. I had neck surgery and was going to be out of work for at least three months during recovery and even longer when all was said and done. The company hired Janet to fill in for me which eventually turned into a permanent job for her when I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and could not return.

Janet had a big job on her hands and a short time to learn it. Doing payroll for five different companies is not an easy task and in the short time I had to train her I did my best to remember everything but left my phone number with Janet and assured her I would do whatever I could to help her get through the learning process. This would be what tied our friendship together and made us still friends eleven years later.

We spent a lot of time on the phone at first as I relayed how to get through the task she was confused on.  In the first few months after the surgery I could do nothing but lie on the bed so her calls were welcomed. Eventually the need lessened but our friendship didn’t. It only became stronger. She was caring and became better at the job than I ever was. She never forgot the color coding system I set up for each of the companies and always told me this was the one thing that helped her the most when dealing with that many different payrolls.  She always complimented me on how I was able to organize so much material and how much easier it made her job.

This last year I have not had a vehicle so our visits became less.  Just yesterday I thought I need to call her and get together because it has been way too long. But once again I am having problems with my vehicle. She lives 22 miles away from my house so we are not close. Lastly I don’t like to call her at work and by the time she was home I had forgotten. I hate that I did not follow through on that call.

Today I got an instant message on Facebook from one of the employees from the company asking me if I had heard she had passed away. I thought maybe they were talking about another employee when I realized there were no other Janet’s I knew of. I was shocked (and still am). I don’t know much more than it happened this morning and I was told she had an aneurism. I am stunned, I cannot believe she is gone and will no longer be calling me to do lunch or just call to talk.

This whole thing makes my heart hurt and my eyes leak. What happened? Had she not been feeling well? Did she go to sleep and just not wake up? I have so many questions but I am no longer in the loop and am not sure I will ever know. All I do know is that I lost one of my dearest friends and that really sucks.


  1. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear friend. May God grant you comfort and hopefully, understanding and peace.

    • Thanks Sharon. I am still in shock and disbelief!

  2. What’s important is that you had a friendship with her for over a decade. She sounds like a splendid person, and is surely walking with God now. Hold those two things to your heart, and stay strong.


    • Thank you Thomas. As I work through my grief those are the two things I will remember most.

  3. Really sad to hear, and what a shock. My heart aches for you.

    • Thank you so much this will be a hard one to work through.

      • I’d like to send you my deepest sympathy. Life is so precious and we are always shocked by death.

      • Thank you so much. I am hoping the disbelief and shock will lessen. But I know they will

  4. I am so sorry for your loss Nancy. She sounds like an amazing person. How awesome to have had the years you did, but I know it’s never enough. (((Hugs)))

  5. Nancy… That is so sad! I am sure that she valued your friendship as well, and what an amazing tribute to her. So very very sorry! Susan

    • Thanks Susan this death is ripping my heart out. I will miss her so much.

  6. I’m so sorry for your loss…My thoughts and Prayers go out to You & her Family. 😦

  7. I’m sad that you lost your friend Janet. Thanks for sharing your memories (and the funny picture) with me.

    • Thanks it is a wonderful memory I am glad I have!

  8. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  9. You were blessed with a nurturing friendship that has physically ended, but whose memories will live on.

  10. Isn’t it curious how some friendships start – you hardly realise they are building until you’re set fair. Lovely memories but how sad she’s gone.

  11. My heart goes out to you and her family……

    Take Care and God Bless 🙂 Kenny T

  12. I am so very sorry to hear this. Thanks for sharing the beautiful story of your friendship!

    • Thank you Patrick. BTW I know you will understand but about an hour after I heard she was gone I got a phone call…. no one was there but an echoing noise. I really felt there was, if you know what I mean.

      • Well wasn’t that thoughtful. 🙂 You’re lucky. 🙂 A special friend.

  13. I can relate and my heart goes out to you. Stay strong.

  14. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  15. I am sorry for your loss… my heart goes out to you.

  16. Oh, sweet Nancy I am so sorry you have lost yet another dear friend. Keeping you in thoughts and prayers. Big, warm hugs!

  17. I lost a work associate close friend last year. It was also a complete shock, but in reflection, the way it happened was the way Jim would have wanted it. The best way to honor Janet’s memory is to remember the good times.

    • And there are a lot of good times to remember.

  18. So sorry to read about your loss. Last year, I lost a friend in a similar way. Kate and I had met at work and stayed in contact for six years after we both left. We both married in 2006, and she moved to Fiji to be with her husband. We kept in touch via Facebook though. Then she said she was coming back to Melbourne for a short time for treatment for breast cancer. This was ongoing over five years, and whenever she came back, she and I would have lunch together. We discovered we had both taken up painting, so shared our respective masterpieces by email, and went to art supply shops after lunch whenever we met up. She did beautiful paintings of Fijian children. The last time she was in Melbourne, early last year, I couldn’t meet with her, because her treatment schedule and my work schedule made it too difficult. Never mind, we said, we’ll meet up in a few months during her next visit. She never told me how serious her condition was, though I suspected things weren’t great if her treatment had lasted this long. Anyway, the next I heard, a few months later, was when people were lamenting her passing, via her Facebook site. She and her family had come back to Melbourne for a few weeks, where she died in hospital. Her funeral was held in Melbourne, and thanks to FB, I was able to attend and to tell other former workmates, who also attended. I am still shocked that she has died, still expect a cheery message to say “In town next week—fancy a pasta and a coffee?”

    • I am afraid for when the shock wears off! We use to dye each other’s hair, a girls day. Not sure I will ever dye my hair without thinking about the fun times we had. But I guess that is not a bad thing!

  19. I am so sorry for your loss. I love the picture of her and am sure that she would approve. That’s what friends do, approve of the silliness.

  20. life deals some tough tough blows and usually they all arrive at once –

  21. Nancy, I’m sorry your heart hurts. What a terrible shock. Sending a gentle hug your way. Take care.

  22. Nancy,

    I am so very sorry to hear of your friend’s passing. It is difficult no matter what the reasons.

    Love ya and God Bless,


  23. I am so very sorry for your loss. It’s the good memories that make it less painful… Although they also make us realize how much they will be missed. The only thing we take with us when we leave this earthly existence is our friendships, love and emotions.

  24. I’m so sorry. This brought tears to my eyes for your loss. 😦

    • Thank you it brings tears to my eyes each time I read it too.

  25. I am sorry to hear for your loss. *hugs*

  26. Sudden loss is so horribly hard…”shocking” is the right word, and having experienced the sudden death of a family member recently, I know the shock doesn’t wear off quickly. I’m so sorry you’re going through this now. Thank you for sharing here with us about your sweet friend Janet.

    • Thanks for the kind words. I am still shocked but I know it will get easier.

  27. Don’t try to make sense of things. Just focus on the good times and the friendship that you have. Nothing can diminish that except time, grieving is just a way to heal yourself.

    • Thanks, it is hard not to try to make sense of why but you are right the good times will shine through.

  28. May the memories of laughter and joy comfort you right now. Sudden death is the most difficult to deal with – I went through two – my dad and now my DH. My memories warm the depths of my soul and comfort my lonely days. I still ask why – when my husband was just approved for knee surgery and had a good heart health check up – the dr even said his heart was perfect. Why then did his heart just stop? We may never know the answers why those we love are taken so suddenly – but we are blessed that we had them in our lives.

    • Well said my friend. And we are SO blessed they touched our lives.

      • so true…

  29. I’m so sorry to hear of your loss, and I presume there are many others who are grieving , too. It might be helpful for you to make a few calls at some point, even if you’ve lost touch with those you worked for, just to share a memory or two. I think if you could find out about a service and somehow get there, that might give you a little release. However you choose to do it, spend some time grieving for your friend and don’t worry about those leaky eyes. There are good times to cry a bit! This is one of them. oxo

    • Thank you! They just posted information on her facebook page. Since she did not use it I was not sure they would. I know it will be hard to get through but I know it will be good to be with others who are grieving for her.

  30. Like the rest of your blogging whanau (family), I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. Weep and remember and cherish the memories; they are what nurture us in the long-term. Kia kaha friend – stay strong.

  31. I am so sorry Nancy.

  32. I am so sorry for your loss Nancy.


  33. Janet’s death was a shocker to us all. I’ve been working for one of the companies for almost 10 years and Janet was the one who referred me. I used to talk to her everyday and now I don’t know what I’ll do not being able to hear her voice anymore.
    It was an aneurism on Monday to a self induced coma by Wednesday. They performed surgery for 7 hours and we were hopeful. Then she went in her sleep on Thursday morning at 1. Janet was truly a wonderful person and such a great friend. I will miss her to much and miss hearing her laugh and her voice. She was such a special lady.

    • Thank you so much for the details. I have been beside myself wondering what happened to take one of my best friends away from me. I am not really friends with anyone she knows so I have been like most of us. Shocked.

      I know she was loved by all and I know we will all miss her dearly. I just wish I would have done one more lunch before she left us.

      I am headed out to Ventra on Wednesday on a camping trip but I am going to rent a car and come home for her services. I will be the one with a purse full of tissues as my mind comes to terms with our loss I know I have a lot of tears that need to be shed.

      Thank you again for your message it has really helped.

      • Of course. I’ll be the one with the baby. 🙂 Janet was in love with her. Janet has known me since I was 13-14 years old and I still can’t believe she’s gone. I hope to see you there.

      • Know that now she is your baby’s angel now. Janet will keep her eye on her from heaven. It is in that we can take comfort. That is how Janet rolls.

        Thank you for contacting me.

  34. Janet was truly a special person and a great friend. I started working for Apple Valley office in 2004 and Janet was the one who referred me. I got used to talking to her everyday and now I don’t know what I’m going to do without hearing her voice or her laugh.
    She had an aneurism on Monday and the doctors performed surgery for about 7 hours. Then she went into a self induced coma. She was gone by Thursday. It happened so very fast and she will be sorely missed. She will be on my mind everyday. Thank you for writing this post. I love the picture because it is so Janet. She was such a good friend and I am still in shock.

    • As I said in my post I got nothing more than a short note. I was confused and my mind would not let me think it was MY Janet. I don’t know anyone from her family and I don’t know them well enough to call. I am so lost because I have no one to grieve with. No one here knows her and my hubby only met her a couple of times. I am also still in shock.

  35. I am so sorry for your loss. It is shocking when we realize how fragile our hold on this life can be for us and for those we care about. Thoughts and prayers are with you, Janet and her family.

    • Thank you so much she will be missed by many

  36. You write of your pain and your shock so well here, and you reflect the beauty of friendship in a loving and heartfelt way. You gave us the joy of knowing such a wonderful soul existed in this world (for way too short a time). Sympathy to you and to her family.

    • Thank you. She was a blessing in my life when I needed a friend she was there. I am still in shock but now my shock is turning into emotion. I know it is something I will need to work through

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