I thought my friend’s sister’s Facebook post was so beautiful, and — in the event some of us do not get to live forever — so wise, I wanted to share it:
I asked my brother Matt to post this note to you all from my Facebook page after my journey came to an end.
I want all of you to know how much you meant to me through my life, and how much of a comfort you were to me during my battle with leukemia.
I fought this battle to the bitter end. There was no treatment I did not try, and no distance I did not travel. But, as one of my doctors told me recently, modern medicine has not been able to catch up to the type and severity of cancer I faced. I have absolutely no regrets about my treatment. We did EVERYTHING right.
The thing that makes me happy now, and brings me peace, is the fact that I lived such a wonderful, amazing life. Don’t get me wrong, it was abbreviated, but what I packed in to the 33 years I was on the Earth was spectacular. I was able to travel the world, had the best friends anyone could ask for, beautiful relationships, a job where I was able to brighten the lives of children, and a family that I was so proud and happy to love.
From my friends in Tallahassee, to England, to The University of Richmond, to The University of Florida, and to Tampa… I was truly blessed. I love you all so much.
There were a couple times on this journey when I asked, “Why is this happening to me?” But I didn’t let that get me down, and I went about making it my business to ensure that my struggle with cancer could ultimately be used to help others someday. I participated in clinical trials and phase 1 studies both in Tampa at Moffitt Cancer Center, and at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington. Knowing that the information the doctors were able to gain from my disease will be used to help others, well, that’s a pretty satisfying feeling.
My only worry is that my family will be sad now that I am gone. We were a particularly close bunch, even in adulthood. I hope that you’ll check in on them every once in a while, and make sure they’re doing okay… Now, and in the years to come. Can you do that for me?
There is one thing I want to share with you that I learned during my own experience, and while watching others. Whatever you are waiting to do, do it now. Not only do we not know how long we have in this world, but life is a richer and fuller experience when, rather than waiting for things to happen to us, we make things happen. So whatever it is that you’re waiting to do, do it now. You’ll thank me. (Big shout out to Mom, Dad, and Matt for helping me to do all the things I wanted to do.)
Each and every one of you reading this has left an indelible mark on my soul that will remain with me forever and ever.
I love you all… And someday, we’ll be together.
Your Friend, Lauren Sampson