Farewell, my friend…

Nearly 20 years ago, I found myself a freshman in college at the age of 39. A Lupus diagnosis had changed life’s direction in midstream and I was starting over again. Buffalo State College opened my eyes to so much more in life and although it was a challenging change, it was an adventure I cherish.
I met a lot of amazing people along the way. One of them was a wonderful woman named Jan. She had finally found the courage to step away from an emotionally abusive and crippling marriage to try to stand on her own. It meant leaving her two sons with their father and climbing mountains of obstacles toward a wholeness of being, but she put very ounce of life into making a new life. We commiserated frequently and cheered each other on and she was an inspiration to me. Jan wanted to be able to work with others who were damaged by emotions they could not control. She knew the right doctor and the right medication could be life-changing. Yes, Jan wanted to help everyone.
We graduated, two forty-somethings in a sea of youngsters, and it was our own Olympic dream. I had moved a county away and we lost track eventually, despite well-meaning intentions to keep in touch. Isn’t that always the way?
I heard from Jan’s sister today; my number turned up among Jan’s possessions. Jan passed away earlier this month. She had 12 years after graduation of working with other clients, of mending broken wings and bruised hearts. I’m sure she touched and healed many people in that time. Sadly, she let herself be caught up in a relationship with someone who could not be helped, despite giving everything she had. It sapped the life out of her until she could see no more escape, and the self-doubts and feelings of hopelessness that threatened to bury her twenty years ago overwhelmed her again. Jan chose to leave this world, to end the pain.
What is it about human nature that allows some people to seek out or accept abusive relationships? It’s an age old problem that all the psychological and social sciences will never define or answer. Jan had so much to give others, to give to the world. I am happy that she had those years of happiness and success in between her dark journeys. Perhaps she was always meant to leave this world early, but was gifted with the time to forge a legacy. She leaves her mark on those who were privileged to share her heart and experience her kind and caring nature.
I am sad, my friend, for the pain that forced your hand in the end. I am sad that no one could help you through. I will remember the laughter and tears and endless cramming for those psych exams. I will remember a fragile flower who worked tirelessly to have a moment in the sun. Farewell, Jan. You will be remembered.



Okay gals, join us on April 17th at PWT Restaurant on Quaker Road in Barker. We’ll be there at 10 a.m. so you can come and decorate or donate a bra. Judy Remington will be serving up coffee and some decadent breakfast pizza. It’s the next step on the “Mammary Mile” as we get closer to Mother’s day… can you help us make the mile???

Pancake breakfast and Chinese Auction 4/28!!

Pancake Breakfast & Chinese Auction
Sunday, March 28th
8am-1pm @ The Barker Fire Hall
$5.00 Adults
$3.00 Kids 12 & Under
***All You Can Eat***
(Pancakes, Eggs, Potatoes, sausage, Toast, and Beverages)
Sponsored by the Somerset Masons
To Benefit the BCS Spanish/French Club


Sunday’s Barker Lion/Barker Music Parent Club Pancake Breakfast and basket auction is dedicated to the memory of Lion John Hayden, who never missed his chance at the griddle to help local organizations. The March 14 breakfast runs from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for children or $15 for a family with four children. Breakfast includes pancakes, eggs, home fries, sausage, toast, juice and coffee, tea or milk.
Local artist C. Gordon Porter donated an original acrylic painting (value
$495) titled “Zinnia Bouquet” for a special $1 raffle. In addition, Oak Orchard Concrete is donating two Buffalo Sabres tickets for the March 31 game plus a Sabres basket. The $1 special raffle will be drawn at the breakfast. During the morning they will also have musical performing groups, a baked goods sale and a memorabilia table with items from previous school musicals. All high school music students have pre-sale tickets or call Matthew Sweeney at 795-9257 to purchase them. Profits from past breakfasts, thanks to
the Lions, will provide concert dress clothes for grades 4-12 and they hope to be wearing them at the May concert for all to see.

Bring on the bras!! two new events!

“Bring on the Bras” on Saturday for another fun afternoon on the Mammary Mile trail! The Soda Jerks Relay For Life team invites you to come to taboo restaurant and bar in Lockport and add your bra to the project. Decorating materials and extra bras will be on hand, and each bra donation requires a $5 donation to the American Cancer Society. Enjoy a fabulous munchie buffet, door prizes, prize auction, 50/50 split drawing and more. The girls need your help to reach a mile by Mother’s Day. For more information, go to http://www.mammarymilehookup.wordpress.com or call Carol Ander at 795-3085.

March 19 is “Girlfriend’s Night” at Hartland Bible Church hall (former St. Mary’s Church site) in Gasport. All ladies are invited to enjoy coffee and cupcakes and share fun and fellowship, beginning at 7 p.m. It’s another stop on the Mammary Mile trail and you’ll be able to decorate a bra to add to the project to benefit the Relay For Life and American Cancer Society. Bring your own old bra or pick one up there, and dedicate it to someone who has faced any kind of cancer, or even a caregiver. There will be prizes and surprises and a chance for a night out with the girls, so go and make some new friends.