Please help us

Laura is the most loved person I know.  It is astonishing to behold.  The outpouring of love for her has been breathtaking ever since she was diagnosed with cancer and particularly now that she is in hospital. Understandably everyone wants to come and visit.  Just a week ago, she would have loved to see her nearest and dearest.  But Laura’s health has declined dramatically. Her tumors are moving at lightening speed. Since the PET/CT scan a month ago, her tumors (which are in all her organs and her bones) have doubled in size and new ones are choking the life in her.

This morning the doctors told us that it is a tribute to her stamina, fitness and healthy eating that she is still alive. But because the tumor burden she is carrying is so heavy, she is now very, very frail and mostly sleeps or is in a twilight state.   She needs what precious little strength she has left for herself right now.  So it is her wish – and it is an extraordinarily unusual one for Laura –  that people don’t drop by to the hospital to visit.  It is more than she can cope with.  Please respect her wishes in this regard.  We know this must be heartbreakingly hard for you all.  Instead she is asking that you post loving comments here on the blog that  I will read to her.  She would like them as a little tribute. Please help us with this.

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49 thoughts on “Please help us

  1. Dearest Laura and Lucie,
    I have been praying for you both day and night. You have been such a blessing to me Laura. Your beautiful smile and sheer joy of life with all of it’s struggles and blessings alike. I do not have words to express how much I will miss being able to pick up the phone to reach out for your supportive words. I love you dear one. I am so very grateful for you.
    May your transition be as peaceful as possible. Know that we will be here to offer Lucie whatever support we can. Rest well my dear one, you’ve fought so hard.
    With all of my love, Liz

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  2. Laura,
    We all have come into each others lives for a reason. I only hope & pray when it is our turn to close our eyes, that we are as loved & cherished as you have been. Know that you will never be forgotten, know that we all love you dearly and that your presence has left a huge footprint in all of us ~
    All my love to you, my friend, from me & all the doggies ~
    Carol

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  3. Dearest Laura and Lucie,
    I’m so grateful to witness your love and to have shared time together. Thank you for the privilege of helping and the chance to express my love.
    Laura, your zest for adventure and life has brightened mine indescribably. I will always cherish the memories of that most amazing whale shark trip!! I too wish you a gentle, peaceful transition and whatever other wondrous, mysterious adventures are next.
    I lift you up in my prayers and surround you with infinite love and light.
    oxox
    Marian

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  4. Dear sweet Laura
    – that Lucie loves you so very much was enough for Tom and I to sign on for your recovery. And though we’ve never met, I feel I’ve grown to know you in bits and pieces over these past months – through photos: yours !!! and Lucie’s!! – and anecdotes! I’ve only had glimpses, really, of who you are. Who you are together with Lucie! I’ve seen your friends rally around you, and I’ve shared in that love, for which I am grateful. I’ve seen the grint – yes, grint! (grit AND flint) – felt the hope, and the joy. Sleep well and long – sweet sweet Love of Lucie. Melt into her embrace. Breath in the perfume of her skin. Be lulled by her voice, and comforted by her caress.
    In love and grace, Jenny

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  5. Oh Laura
    I know you well through the love and life you have given to my dear dear friend Lucie
    But I wish so much we had been closer ( in miles) so I could have known you -Lucie has done the best job at letting us know how wonderful and special you are.
    I love your eyes and the love they give.
    I look at you in your pictures and know your strength, smiling through everything. I love you and for everything you have shown us. Please feel safe and peaceful and feel that I am holding your hand – if my lovely Lucie will let me!
    I’ ll give it a squeeze!
    I love you
    From another Brit!
    Barrie XXX

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  6. For Laura:
    Why does God put us on His earth?
    Laura He chose to bring laughter,
    To record His beauty,
    To ponder deep thoughts,
    To tickle our whimsy.
    To give us love, to take our love.

    Why does God take us from His earth?
    This we may never know.
    We can plead for Him to let you stay.
    But in the end, He decides when and how.
    This is so sad, so unfair to us who know you.
    But because He did put you on His earth,
    We are all better for it.
    Because we got to hear your laughter,
    Enjoy your photos, ponder your deep thoughts,
    Be tickled by your whimsy. .
    Relish your love, and accept our love.
    And because of those things, you will always remain on His earth.
    In your spirit. And in our hearts.
    Love you Laura.

    For Lucie:
    God put you on this earth for Laura.
    He picked the perfect person.
    Love you Lucie.

    John of Denver

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  7. Hi. I’m Kerry, Laura’s former partner and all-around pal of Lucie’s. Laura has asked, for anyone who is inclined to do so, that you pray or wish for a miracle on her behalf.
    Thanks and xoxo.

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      1. Yay! Thank you Elaine for keeping your thoughts positive and for writing a positive comment here on the blog. Laura very much appreciates this kind of thinking and blog comment. It gives her hope, as you can imagine. The flowers you sent Laura are beautiful! She has repeatedly said so. She loves them!

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    1. Dearest Laura, I will always hold out hope for a miracle. May you wake up free of the cancer that has invaded your body. Have faith all will be well. I am lying my hands on your abdomen and giving you reiki so that the pain is relieved. Blessings of love and healing to you and Lucie.
      Liz

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  8. Ya baby, I’m with you and holding your hand always. Thank you for knowing my flaws and still loving me for so so many years. Thank you for your always-ready thousand-watt smile, for never judging me, for always helping me understand myself and being so gentle about it. Thank you for giving me tips on how to take a better photograph (even yesterday! I remember – take a breath and hold it). Thank you for never hesitating to be silly, genuine, honest, and kooky. Thank you for being gifted in so many ways and sharing them with me. You are my movie gal, my flea market gal (my Bettie Page gal!), my sushi gal, my very-first-trip-to-Europe gal, my Washington Square Park gal, and I am with you and holding your hand always.

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  9. To our dear Laura,

    How can one person mean so much to so many? Because, Laura, you are one of the rare ones in this world who always reached out. You reached out to the two of us outside of Joe, one day, some years ago – we, who were strangers to you one minute, became friends in the next – because YOU reached out.

    You reached out, always with a smile, to say hi to everyone you came in contact with. You reached out to everyone and everything in life – embracing and rejoicing in all that you did. You have a passionate love for life, itself – reaching out and holding onto every moment because you know something most of us don’t: that every moment counts and should be celebrated. You reached out to the creatures beneath the sea on your intrepid diving adventures. You reached out to all animals whenever you saw them, and as if you shared a common language, they understood that they were in the presence of a friend. You reached out to love and found your Lucy. You reached out to hope and the belief that one should never give up easily. That life and love and laughter were worth every ounce of your strength to fight for them. In our hearts, dear Laura, you won them all.

    Now you are reaching further, past the moon and to the stars. And they, as all us have, will welcome you as their new, sweet, smiling, friend.
    All because you were sweet and brave enough to keep reaching out.
    Why do you mean so much to so many? Because of who you are. And that, dear Laura, will never end.

    With love from our heart to yours,
    Renée and Sophia

    Because you reached out.

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  10. Dear Laura and Lucie,

    I just watched your beautiful wedding ceremony and it was so emotional, all I can say is what the hell were you waiting for, so happy you found what all of us want which is unconditional happiness and trust.

    Love you Laura, I will keep you in my heart forever.

    Love
    Brendan Walsh

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  11. How blessed we are to have such wonderful memories of our times together, from Gay Street (the invaluable pictures of our girls to your precious kitty Puddy) …..to the absolutely fabulous surprise visit you and Lucie made to Woodstock a whole summer ago. We laughed so much …. Tati and Meggie were surprised to see how CRAZY we all acted remembering “the old days”. What a joyful experience. Thank God for that visit. Thank God for Lucie. Thank God for you. Your beautiful smile, strong spirit and courage have been a gift to all of us. What more can we say except that Maaaaaaar and Shaaaaaar are with you in spirit, and we ask that you grace us with your spirit until it we are all together again. xoxo

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  12. Dear Laura and Lucie,
    We are recent friends having just met over Facebook. But even though we have met recently, I have grown to love you both and have been keeping you in my prayers. I wish you Laura a peaceful transition to the place we are all going eventually. Lucie, I know this is a hard time for you and I pray that this transition is peaceful for you as well. Thank you for posting your wedding day; the love you both have for each other is so special and beautiful. I am honored to know you both.
    Much love and positive energy coming your way!
    Kathleen

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  13. My Dear Laura & my dear Lucie:

    Laura, I love you so much. I am with you every minute and every second. It is exactly what you said to me: you created a family and this is who we are – your family and our family. We are here with you and we will continue to be with you. We feel you and we are suffering with you and we will see the light with you. As hard as this is to say: I wish you no more suffering and pain and a smooth transition when your soul is ready. This is unfortunately the only sure thing we do know that we all need to face. I learned so much from you, Laura, and thank you for all the laughters with all the crazy people we encountered and how much they would benefit from your love, compassion and the knowledge of just “being you”. (Maybe they will one day eat the bread with the beef, on a crostini; or have the forks aligned ‘incorrectly’! 🙂

    Congratulations again on your beautiful wedding – it is for eternity!
    And so are we: your family forever.

    this lifetime – beyond – forever.

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  14. Dear sweet Laura,
    You are such a wonderful person, and that is why the love you have given is coming back to you. I am so happy that you have found a beautiful love of your own in these past few years, what a blessing. I have loved knowing you and spending time with you over the years, back in the old days. I will always cherish your playful ways of showing your love, like teasing me and calling me Heat-tha, because of Susan Lopez’s heavy Queens accent. I will miss you dearly Laura. You are in my heart and there you will stay.
    Love,
    Heather/Jake

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  15. You made me lol ’till I cried. I cry for your pain and suffering. I admire your courage, and your smile shines love to all who have been blessed with knowing you. Even if it is one $teve brown job, Sweetie;-) you wil always be the Mayor of the McBurney “Y”.XOxoxoxo. Jo-Anne

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  16. Jo-Anne …Thanks for sharing such sweet thoughts from your friends. Peace and love to you all. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. 🙂
    Nancy

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  17. Hi Laura. I am with family in Puerto Rico but wish that I was nearer to hold you, to comfort you. But in the truest sense I am with you as I am holding you in my heart and my mind. This is beyond the physical. No matter bow sick your body may be, you are still the same Laura that I have always loved and adored from the moment we met. I think am a better person because of our friendship. This is a testament to all the goodness that you radiate. I am so lucky I know you. I am thinking about how much you would love being on this beach with us. I am also thinking of how much you have taught me to laugh and have fun! I love you Scharie! Your Brownie Forever

    Connected by DROID on Verizon Wireless

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  18. Dear Lucie. Because of you and the way you communicate, we are all able to have the possibility to understand what you and Laura have been going through. Hard as it is, this has been a gift.
    We have been able to be with you through all the ups and downs. I so appreciate who you are and above all else, your devotion. Please let us know how we can help you too. Steve

    Connected by DROID on Verizon Wireless

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  19. Dear Laura and Lucie,

    You are in my thoughts and prayers. The tenderness and love you have shown each other is so moving and beautiful. You have both been so blessed to find each other, to find that one true love that lasts forever.

    This is a time of precious moments and I, and many others who love you are there with you in spirit. I hope that you can feel our love and support.

    Laura, there is no one like you. You are a great artist, a great soul with such a brilliant, generous spirit and a passionate love of life. You have brought so much joy, light and laughter into my world. It is very hard to let you go after finding each other again after all these years but I am so grateful for all the memories, and the friendship we share.

    Thank you, Laura, for all the beauty, grace, compassion and courage you have shown me, and so many others who love you. You have blessed my life.

    I wish you a peaceful journey.
    There are no good-byes.
    Love never ends.
    You will live on in my heart forever.

    Love,
    Elaine

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  20. Deat dear Laura, since I’ve known you it’s been impossible to think of you and not smile! You have brightened my life with your beauty and wit, wonder and kindness, and I have treasured knowing you – you’re a special special person. While maybe we won’t make that diving trip this time around I believe our energies will meet again – I’m banking on it! Sending you the hugest hug, enormous wishes and love, love and more love. Peace, my friend. xxxxxoooooo

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  21. I have said this to you before Laura but I would like to repeat it here if I may. Don’t be afraid. People say that what happens after we embark on our mysterious journey to the unknown is the biggest miracle there is. Hope is restored. Peace returns. Love is everywhere. And once again we can see clearly. I’d like to believe that.
    You are very much loved on this plane and I have a strong feeling you will be surrounded by love wherever this endless journey takes you next. Don’t you worry.
    Your warmth and fantastic life energy is unstoppable! I adored you from the moment I first meet you. Almost 20 years ago!!! Can you believe it?! I instantly new you were my friend. You have been such a positive force in my life over the years. You always made sure my life here was a bit easier. You were always on my side. You were my true advocate in my darkest moment in America. I’ll NEVER forget it and I’ll take this feeling with me to the edge of eternity.
    I’ll miss you terribly my love. You are always and forever in my heart. It is the truth. Be safe and strong and don’t forget me.
    I know we will reconnect with each other again and again.
    Till then my friend.
    I fell nothing but love for you Laura.
    Paul

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  22. Dear Lucy,
    all I can say is that I’m so glad that you are by Laura’s side. So much care and love.
    Thank you for posting. Thank you for being honest. Thank you for including us. We all want to know what’s happening and therefore be closer to Laura.
    Much love
    Paul

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  23. Dear Biggie:
    I am reluctant to share my message for all to see.
    so many people that love you have expressed such powerful, beautiful messages.. I am not so good with the words.
    I have known you a Hell of a long time, Big Girl . When I watched your wedding video, It was a treat to see you and Lucie sitting on your sofa with your blanket and vases and from the flea market.. The highlight of the video was to hear your laugh, which I miss . What a laugh. No one has a laugh like that.
    I think of our little dinners/movie on Gay Street after you began to cook. We would sit on that sofa . Sometimes we would laugh about how we we met on the David Turk job. I just started laughing now when I thought of the famous Berkley Caterers . Remember how you found them in the Yellow Pages and had started with the A’s. Decades later, I remember your showing me the beautiful woman ( Lucie) online .. And I remember almost literally running into Lucie during a show storm . I recognized her from the photo and think I recall surprising her by hugging her. I guess I am recounting these little scenes to make you laugh.
    I love you. I miss you. I have desperately wanted to see you for a long time , but I have wanted to respect your privacy. Kerry has helped me with this.
    Big Girl.

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  24. Dear Laura,
    Reading all these letters describing loving relationships with you, it is such a natural wonder to me what makes an individual in this world. And how we don’t know our effects in it until our presence is threatened. Then, with the coming of that distance, do we begin to see the whole of a life. How did you come to be so gregarious and powerful, humble and revealing?? Your electrifying fullness of the moment. Your speed and sharpness. Your anxiety and persistence. Your hearing others and guiding them through caring love. Your caring, your judgements, your remorse and your renewals.
    Panicked that you went from catering to dog-grooming, it ended up allowing me the benefit of your loyalty to me. Where did this loyalty come from? All the parts that are Laura are this blanket of beach, or sea creature, or urban escapade, or corny dog story!
    I love what Paul said about your journey forward, that the soul exists beyond the physical, and it is a place bathed in love. That souls become joined in a continuum.
    It is a shock to have you torn away in your full bloom. With your illness we are all learning about our own mortality. Know that I will keep you with me during all my days left here, and with that I will try to reach the fulfillment of my own individuality that you shared and nurtured.
    You have been brave and embracing in your life as in your illness.

    Tears and laughter and love for you in this world and in the next.
    Cathy

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  25. Laura,
    I’m praying with the rest of the gang for a miracle, but trust by now you know how much you are loved. I have to smile when I think about some of our 25-years ago catering antics. I am currently laughing about a gig at Steinway hall when one of my regular “works in a real bar, doesn’t know how to burp bottles” bartenders, punked his buddy with a salmon head to the sneaker. There was a certain petite female waiter – you know who she is – that they called the Tasmanian devil and they swore they were taking her down.

    Rest well, dear friend, and lean back on the everlasting arms. Know that they support you, carry you, hug you – whatever you need. It has been a real privilege and joy to have you walking with, on part of my path. Too many memories and smiles to count – but always joyful. Your angels have attitude. Til we meet again – big love. Kecky

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  26. Laura: the sexiest girl I ever knew. I remember when I met you 30+ years ago- you sent over your friend to pick me up at the original cubby hole. There I thought that she was doing the cruising, but when she pointed to another woman in the middle of the room- that was the first time I saw you. You finally came up to me and introduced yourself: you were so beautiful and cute, with that gorgeous smile that lights up every room. I fell in love with you forever that night. 30 years later, you are part of my family, always there when I needed you. Reg and I were always there for you when you needed us. Our Monday night dinners at Reg’s house when you cut Sonny’s nails are the memories I cherish. We talked about our lives together as we ate our take-out chicken, and laughed, and cried. I love you very much, Laura. You have left a mark on my life.

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  27. Okay Deeb-
    We’re with you.
    I’m just saying that Lucie is a rock.
    She’s fighting for you with everything she’s got.
    And the love I see between the two of you is humbling.
    It seems to be the point of everything.
    Prayers and Peace,my Deeb
    I’m not giving up on a miracle,so there.
    Love you

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  28. Laura and Lucie,

    I found your blog months ago when I started a nutritional program myself. I was looking for inspiration when I found this blog and that is exactly what I got. I was and am inspired by your dedication to each other and to getting well, your strength, and the work that has gone into documenting this experience. Thank you for sharing your story with me. I check this blog often hoping for good news and I will continue to check it for that miracle. Stay strong.

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  29. Hola Laura and Lucie, you don’t know me but I have been following your blog for some months now. I want to thank you for sharing this difficult journey with us, that show us many beatiful things despite all the awful moments, you inspire me, your love for each other is so big, so strong, so wonderful, so real….and what is even more inspiring is that you both know it, and feel it, and live it… what a gift!, this must be one of the biggest gifts life can give us and you Lucie and Laura have it, I am so glad for you having find each other.
    Muchas gracias from the bottom of my heart for this beatiful lesson, thank you for sharing with many more people than your friends and family your story.
    I think about you and light a candle now for your huge and beatiful true amor (love).

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  30. Laura, dear sweet friend,

    It is late summer. Early evening. The sun is still fairly high in the sky; we’ll have about two more hours before complete sunset. We are sitting on the bench outside Joe; you on one end, me on the other. I remember you asking if it was okay for you to join me, as I seemed to be having quiet time. Of course it was. And there we sat, you reading some enormous book, and I think I was just sitting and thinking, with Sadao in tow. For hours. Two blissful hours. I think that was the moment something solidified in our friendship. You actually thanked me the next day for allowing you to not talk, to sit with your book and your thoughts, and I, of course, said “of course!”

    I’ve seen you bravely navigate through some of the most difficult challenges life had to throw at you, and even through the most painful, you braved on, head high, looking, looking, looking for a new happiness to take the place of all that you had been through.

    And I so admired you. I so very much admired you!

    And then you and Lucie found one another, and I saw you light up like a fireworks display – happy Laura! Loved Laura! Found Laura! Fulfilled Laura!

    And I still so admire you, sweet friend. Your courage, your humor, your charm, and that fantastic smile that can light up a whole room! And – lest we forget – you are the shark snuggler! When you told me about an upcoming trip to snorkel with the whale sharks, after I mentioned I’d always wanted to do that, your immediate response was to extend an invitation and offer to help me make it happen. That big, beautiful heart.

    I love you, Laura. I feel the closeness of a kindred soul. A sister.

    It is late summer. Early evening, The sun is still fairly high in the sky; we’ll have about two more hours before complete sunset. We are sitting on the bench outside Joe.

    Always.

    I love you.

    – Robert

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  31. Dear Laura and Lucie,

    I wrote you a note that seems to have disappeared into cyberspace, so at the risk of repeating myself, I am sending another message.

    Laura, I think of you daily and hold you in prayer. You are such a beautiful person and a joy to know. You have such an incredible passion for beauty and love of adventure. What’s more, you are so giving and supportive and possess a positive energy and profoundly indefatigable spirit. Your sense of humor is infectious and you light up the room with your wonderful smile. You are such a blessing in my life, and in the lives of so many others, and we are all so much richer because of your presence.

    It is no surprise to me that you two found each other, as you are both filled with tremendous warmth, generosity, and goodness. Your love for one another is such an inspiration and example to all. I for one, will long remember and cherish your wedding. It was such an honor to be with you during such a beautiful and tender moment.

    You are both being held in my thoughts and prayers. May grace and peace surround you and the love of God, in whom we have our being, uphold you and sustain you today, tomorrow, and forever.

    Rebecca

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  32. Sending you peace and love, Laura. Your enthusiasm and integrity are what distinguish you from others. You’re real, you’re passionate, you’re funny. There aren’t many like you. I wish you smooth passage. You’re release is our loss. I give you an embrace and kiss. Be at peace.

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  33. Dear Laura and Lucie,
    Your love and courage are simply inspiring. You’ve touched so many, including me through my son’s fortune in finding your purse.
    We send you our love and prayers.

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  34. Laura is my east coast twin. I am the Deep South version. She is a fan of good design, we are both art photographers and both of our dads were/are dentists… And we both are unemployable! We just don’t like working unless it is our own work! There I said it for both of us, Laura! I love you with all my heart and you helped me so much after my breakup with Steve. Mornings of coffee dates, laughing and crying, but mostly laughing. You always appreciated my humor and laughed at my jokes and I got to see one of the best smiles south of 14th Street and north of the mason dixson line! Thanks for sneaking me in to the 14th St Y. I am swimming now at NYU and I swim for you too Laura! And I will pick apples for you as long as I can, our sweet Laura. LOVE is our weapon. Lisa

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  35. Dear Laura,
    I am continuing to pray for you in this difficult time. Having just met you in Tijuana so full of life, hope and things to look forward to, I find it difficult to believe things aren’t as they were. At the clinic Melissa and I joked to each other wondering where the sick people were? You were off enjoying walks along the beach, cycling (when the bikes where in operating condition :)) and enjoying the markets. Although later in your stay the CO did keep you a little closer to the room!
    We talked about not coloring our hair and I was thinking about joining you but waffling; still I haven’t colored it since before Tijuana and I will where this gray proudly in honor of you!
    We so enjoyed the time visiting, laughing and sharing. Meeting people like you makes life better. You are a very special and wonderful person Laura and you are always in my heart.
    Love and hugs, Donna (and Melissa)

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  36. What we know today,
    is that you are our teacher and our inspiration.
    You are our fearless guide
    showing us how to manage the unimaginable.
    We are in awe of your ceaseless, persistent courage.
    These things, you have given us today.

    What we will know tomorrow,
    is yet a mystery to us all.
    But we are all marching with our eyes
    fixed on the same destination.
    Thank you for showing us your vision of life,
    in all its permutations.
    Thank you for showing us the way –
    for sharpening our lenses to appreciate life
    as we have never before envisioned it.
    You have given us a gift we can never repay.

    We love you, Laura.

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    1. Laura, you are my friend,but more importantly,my only dive buddy,my Deeber. As I follow Lucie’s incredible blog, the posts,the photographs,I know again why you were the one I chose to go deep with. You have always been in full focus,going all out,even now. I trust you all the way.You say your truth, and you can hear mine with courage and that wicked humor. You have changed me. I am going to trust more and be braver. You are in the warrior class,my Deeb. And you are still a flirt xxxxxx Deeb

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  37. Dear Laura and Lucie,
    We spoke only briefly a few months back when Lucie first sent the email to her friends about the diagnosis. It wasn’t a very long conversation we had Laura but I liked the warmth in your voice and looked forward to meeting you one day. I have known Lucie since we were at journalist college back in 1985 and though Lucie had moved to New York from London in the early 1990s, she had always stayed in contact and we spoke many times then (and thanks to that wonderful invention -email!). I knew Lucie was very very happy to have met you and found someone she had bonded with. May that love continue for you both. Steve xxxx

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