This is Kenji, Jessica’s husband.
I am writing with the heaviest of hearts to inform all of Jessica’s blog followers that she has lost her 4 year war with ovarian cancer. I am going to keep the site up for at least another year because I recognize that it has a lot of information on it that Jess worked hard to collect and compose. Please spread the word for anyone who may need these resources. Beyond that, I will leave all of you with the following letter…
To my love, my heart, my soul, my everything, my Jessica,
On our wedding day, the first dance was our song, “Forever” by Ben Harper. The bold and unapologetic request Harper makes in this song is that we not take our days for granted; that we give each other a home for our ‘forever’, that our forever ‘not roam’, and ‘not a day less will do’ to truly honor our forever. I had the pleasure and honor of being your forever for 4070 days. Together we fulfilled our mutual promise to live life governed by, as Harper put it, ‘a hand-less clock with numbers.’ 4070 days seems like a lot, but when compared with the forever we imagined when I proposed to you, suddenly the number seems impossibly, and tragically, small.
On day 4070, the unstoppable force of our forever love for each other met the immovable object of death for you. The resulting friction has created a chaotic rift of pain, yearning, and desolate sadness that no physical pain I have ever felt could ever match. It is a testament to the person you were that so many others are feeling some degree of this pain too. We are all so diminished without you.
Stricken as I am by this chaos, you would expect that I would return to order. Pick up the pieces. Sort myself out. After all, it’s what you always did: You could take my colossal messes and turn them into organized art. You would take the blank and spark it into life with ornate details only you could imagine. You would take the cold and empty and add the warmth of your love to make everyone feel special. You would look at an “empty” fridge and whip up a feast. You would take our simple house and make a functionally brilliant home. You would fight the chaos, barely controllable pain, and desolate sadness of ovarian cancer with meditative dignity, a powerful elegance, and a magnetic sense of humor. You made the nurses and doctors in a cancer ward laugh.
I will take the pure smile, unfettered joy, absurd laughter, serious tears, infinite lessons, wonderful songs, and appreciative wonderment from our 4070 days forward into my forever, and in your memory, not a day less will do.
Your love, your heart, your soul, your everything,