This is in memoriam of my best friend and mentor Paulan Gordon.
Paulan lived a whole ocean away from me and in person I never met her, but when we zoomed, her presence was right next to me.
I experienced Paulan as a woman of substance and authority and add love and compassion in the mix. Her wisdom and care lifted me out of a lot of ditches, of which there was quite a lot with my bipolar.
She never minded listening to me going on how I want to die sometimes. Never tried to make it off as nothing. She just loved me anyway. When I were depressed and ignored everyone, she chased me down and told me that she will never forget me, even if I was also on her calendar reminders.
We had so many laughs and interesting chats. Talked about Egyptians, Jerusalem and Lithuania and lots of other places. Going on imaginary trips… she really was so well traveled.
She always reminded me how highly functional I still am even if I felt useless. She could so easily show me the things that I should be grateful for, even though I felt that I’m just staring into a big black abyss.
It wasn’t just a mentor relationship. We divided our time together. One half for me and the other half for her. We became really friends. I miss her, there is a huge absence in my live without her, but I am happy for her that she is now in a better place.
My friend Paulan just exchanged this temporary life with eternal life, where dementia or COPD don’t exist.
A life for life. Rest in peace and softly my darling friend.
Elmarie Janse van Rensburg (South Africa)