Friday made me realize how selfish I am. While I go about my day looking for things to complain about, there are people with greater struggles but are more thankful for their blessings.
On Friday, we celebrated the life of Laurie Pufpaff, a life lived to the fullest extent possible. For the past ten years, she battled with cancer, but she lived with grace. She didn’t let her diagnosis hold her back. It never kept her from living. If anything, it gave her more of a reason to do the things she loved.
Her battle spoke volumes to so many people. She showed true faith in not questioning God in such trying times. She is an example of a true believer. She never gave up on God, and I believe he did the same for her. It’s easy to thank God in good times, but it takes strength to be thankful during the hard times.
Now don’t be mistaken, she didn’t lose her fight to cancer; she won by the way she lived her life. Cancer didn’t stand a chance against this fighter. She continued to be a wife, a mother, a friend, and an educator. Her presence could light up any room.
I met Laurie in high school, and she became Mama Puf to me and eventually the whole lacrosse team. She was our team’s biggest fan. She was always positive and encouraging, even if we weren’t very good. I went to a game a few years back, and she was the first person I ran into. Years after her kids had graduated, she was still cheering the team on. That’s who she was.
I never heard her complain. Even when she was hurting, she continued to wear a smile, and that smile is how she will be remembered. The amount of love at her funeral on Friday illuminated her character, and it provided evidence that she touched every life she encountered.
That’s how I want to be remembered. I want to be more like Laurie. I want to love unconditionally, live fully, and trust God always. I fall short in all of those areas, but Friday was a reminder of what a great role model Laurie was. She was everything I hope to be. I am already so far behind, but if I can be half the women she was, that’s something I can be proud of.
Now I challenge you. I challenge you to live more like Laurie. Be the light for others, even in the midst of your own battles. Show the world that no matter what comes your way, your God is greater and so is your strength!
Rest in peace to one of the greatest angels this world has ever known.