My friend Jan from Washington State called to give me the sad news that my friend Ginger passed away last Monday. I am grateful that Jan thought of me, knew I needed to know, and graciously took on the hard job of delivering the painful message. It was a blessing to hear it from a friend.
Ginger would have been 45 this December...just a year older than my own daughter. She started out as my boss and wound up being my friend. She was a whirlwind of energy and paradoxes, a Phd and avid square dancer, a positive, relentless torrent of ideas, interests and projects. Ginger lived all aspects of her life Ginger's way. She wasn't mean or belligerent or arrogant; she was persistent and knew how she wanted things to be. There were no walls or obstacles in Ginger's world; she simply went another way. She loved to have mementos of her friends in her home, commissioning special pieces from the metal-worker or seamstress or jewelry-maker or woodworker or quilter...no matter how small the item or how little its value, she displayed them all. Her bright mop of curly red hair and startlingly violet eyes made her someone you would not soon forget. She was unusual, vibrant, unsettling, disarming, fun to be around and a force of nature. When Ginger came into your life, she CAME INTO your life and, regardless of how you felt about her (good or bad) you could not ignore her.
Even though we didn't see each other often I shall miss her very much. Her courage to be herself regardless of the consequences drew me to her. She lived honestly and courageously and she believed in people. That was her gift. Because of her example I will strive to live less concerned about what others think and more attuned to what really matters and what is true. Thank you Ginger. You will be my friend for as long as I live.