Heather McManamy is writing you a letter from the other side of the world. In 2013, this wonderful mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. She passed away recently at the age of 36. But first, she entrusted a letter to her husband Jeff, which he was to (and did) put on her Facebook page.
Heather requests that people tell her daughter about her love from beyond the veil (and maybe exaggerate stories of her coolness a little). But most importantly, Heather encourages us to enjoy each day we have and to get the most out of life’s fleeting journey.
Good day, everyone!
On behalf of the love of my life, I’m publishing this. This is what she said. Many blessings to you all.
– McManamy, Jeff
I have both good and bad news for you. The bad news is that I’m obviously no longer alive. If you’re reading this, the good news is that you’re not one of them (unless they have wifi in the afterlife). Yes, this is a problem. It hurts beyond words, but I’m just grateful I had such a wonderful life filled of love, joy, and incredible friends. I am fortunate enough to have no regrets and to have used every ounce of energy I possessed living life to the fullest. I adore you all and am grateful for this incredible life.
I’m glad you have whatever religion provides you with comfort. Please keep in mind that we are not religious. Please don’t tell Brianna that I’ve passed and gone to heaven. That suggests, in her eyes, that I chose to be somewhere else and abandoned her.
In actuality, I did all in my power to be here with her, since there is no else I’d rather be than with her and Jeff. Please don’t perplex her by allowing her to believe anything that isn’t true. I’m not in heaven, after all. I’ve arrived. But not in the wretched flesh that had turned against me. My vitality, my love, my laughter, and those unforgettable memories are all with you. Please don’t think of me in terms of pity or sorrow. Smile, knowing that we had a great time together and that the experience was unforgettable. I despise making people cry.
I love making people laugh and smile more than anything else, so instead of concentrating on the melancholy Terms of Endearment ending of my narrative, laugh at the memories we produced and the fun we had. Please tell Brianna stories so she understands how much I adore her and how proud I am of her (and make me sound waaay cooler than I am). Because nothing makes me happier than being her mother. Nothing. Every moment with her brought me joy I couldn’t have imagined before she entered our lives.
Also, don’t mention I passed away of cancer. Because, while cancer took almost everything from me, it didn’t take my love, hope, or pleasure. It wasn’t a “war,” but rather life, which is frequently brutally unpredictable and unfair, and that’s just the way it goes. Dammit, I didn’t lose. I regard the manner I lived with cancer for years to be a major victory. Please keep that in mind.
Most importantly, I had the incredible fortune of spending almost a decade with Jeff, the love of my life and greatest friend. There is such a thing as true love and soulmates. With Jeff by my side, every day was full of laughter and joy. He is, without a doubt, the best spouse on the planet. When so many people would want to flee because of my disease, he never wavered. We found a way to laugh together even on the darkest days you could imagine. I adore him more than life itself, and I genuinely believe that a love like that can last a lifetime.
Time is the most valuable commodity in the world, and I am tremendously fortunate to have lived my life with Jeff for so long. Jeff, I adore you. Brianna’s awesomeness, in my opinion, is our love brought to life, which is rather lovely. Having to say goodbye breaks my heart completely. It hurts my heart all over again if it’s half as sad for you as it is for me, because the last thing I want to do is make you sad.
I hope that as time passes, you will remember me and smile and laugh, since we had an incredible life together. Googling Physicist’s Eulogy will reveal that it is a scientific reality that I will always be with you both in some way. If you just stop and look hard enough, I’m sure I’ll be there (in as non-creepy a way possible). You’re my entire universe, and I treasure every moment we spent together.
Friends, I adore you all and am grateful for the most awe-inspiring existence I’ve ever known. Thank you also to all of my wonderful physicians and nurses who have looked after me so well. I have no doubt that my team did everything they could to make my day as pleasant as possible. From the bottom of my heart, I wish all of my friends a long and healthy life, and I hope you will appreciate each day as much as I did. Please rack up a bar tab that would make me proud if you attend my funeral.
Play “Keg on My Coffin” on the stereo and dance on the bar for me (because there had better be a dance party at some point). Celebrate life’s beauty with a wild party, because you know that’s what I want, and I believe that, in some strange way, I’ll be there as well (you know how much I hate missing out on fun). I’m looking forward to haunting everyone of you, so this is more of a see you later than a goodbye. Please do me a favor and notice the delicate adventure that is this insane life for a few minutes each day. Never forget that every day counts.