“Heroes are made by the paths they choose, not the powers they are graced with.”
― Brodi Ashton
Today would have been the 66th birthday of one of my real life heroes. In 2007 I published the book, ‘Halfway Across the River,’ which in large part chronicled the life, death, and afterlife of Margaret Borwhat. Margaret was a woman I had met in 2004 when she called me asking if I could help her to ‘die well.’ We spent the next few years exploring everything that we could about life, death, and life after death.
Today’s quote embodies Margaret so perfectly. Margaret lived a life that would look enviable to many. She had beauty, education, and a very comfortable socio-economic status. Despite these niceties Margaret found herself diagnosed with breast cancer at a young age. She could have quietly dealt with her disease and retreated into the creature comforts of her world during the many years of remission she was blessed with. But that is not the path she took. Instead she chose to combine her mis-fortune and her resources and she turned this into a passion for helping others. She became one of the most passionate and prolific breast cancer patient advocates in the nation having a profound effect on treatment, legislation, and standard of care practices.
To say she inspired me would be a gross understatement…. to say her inspiration stopped when she died would be an even bigger understatement. Margaret’s parting words to me the day before she died implied that she was going to help me to help others once she arrived to the other side. In 2007, when I published ‘Halfway Across the River‘ I thought Margaret had already made good on that promise with the events that book recounts. Today a full 7 years later, Margaret continues to make her presence known in my life and frequently in the lives of many others who are in need. The sequel to her story has already been penned and will be published as soon as I get around to hitting the ‘send’ button – I am just waiting for the green light that says, ‘GO’- and I trust implicitly that the universe will give me that grren light at the right and perfect time.
In the meantime, today I pay tribute today to this remarkable woman. I was so very blessed to get to call her my ‘friend,’ and I am doubly blessed to still find myself in position to receive her goodness as it stretches from her corner of the universe into mine.