Tucked in between the Many Faces of Jerry Orbach and Ronnie Van Zant’s Hot 100, was the fresh, open face of a young woman and the quote "My name is Sonia Todd, and I died of cancer at the age of 38".
Sonia, from northwestern Idaho, decided to write her own obituary as an expression of her humility, gratitude and a truthful take on her life.
The truth, or my version of it, is this: I just tried to do the best I could. Sometimes I succeeded, most of the time I failed, but I tried. For all of my crazy comments, jokes, and complaints, I really did love people. The only thing that separates me from anyone else is the type of sin each of us participated in. I didn't always do the right thing or say the right thing and when you come to the end of your life those are the things you really regret, the small simple things that hurt other people.
What strength it took for her, with the knowledge that she would be leaving her young boys and dear husband, to summarize her life into 625 words. There was power in her statements of humility; she was not perfect but she had a wonderful, happy life made worthwhile by people along the way. She defined herself as a mom, a wife and a Christian. Perhaps in all the craziness of life, and the chaos that came when cancer entered into the Todd home, Sonia did not get a chance to speak her mind and tell her tale. Now she left her family, friends and the world with instructions,– take care of yourselves and take care of each other. Bless others with your presence in the same way that the people who surrounded her blessed Sonia’s life.
Yesterday, after services at the Baptist church, there was a potluck to honor Sonia’s life. Donations will be gathered for an education fund for her boys, James and Jason. Cancer has taken away another young mom, a precious wife. There are too many empty places at the table. Honor Sonia in this way: Know that those who surround us bless us beyond measure. Take the time to forgive, to love. And fight for more awareness, and better screening methods for all cancers. Sonia deserved to be a survivor.
|Photo credit: Idaho Statesman|