So, I woke up New Years Day to some terrible news. My darling Factor 5 friend Dudley passed away. She was 69 years old. I spoke to her husband and he told me the awful news. I tried to listen but I just felt like the floor was sinking underneath me and I lost my breath.
I first heard of Dudley about 23 years ago. My aunt found her online and thought she would be helpful for me. Dudley agreed to call me all the way from North Carolina. I remember the first time she ever called me I was in the Janeway hospital. I put on my robe and wheeled my IV pole to the little telephone room they had up the hall. She spoke so gently and sweet. I loved her southern accent and she answered all my questions. She taught me how to advocate for myself, how to stand up for myself even when when doctors or specialists made recommendations.
She made me feel hopeful that I could live a normal, happy life.
Dudley was the only person in the whole entire world who knew exactly what Factor 5 was like. We knew what each other had been threw without ever saying it out loud.
Over the years we emailed and called often and in September of 2013 I finally got to meet her face to face. Zane and I flew to Raleigh, North Carolina for a little honeymoon and Dudley drove up to meet us. We went for lunch at a little Irish Pub by our hotel. It was a beautiful, sunny day and we sat outside. Dudley and I both ordered the exact same thing and we laughed. She was so wonderful and so full of life. I loved her so much and she meant so much to me. I wish I could of told her how much she helped me but I think somehow she knew.