Britt Anderson Photography » North Shore and Lake County, IL Child, Senior, Engagement and Family Portrait Photographer

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Saying Goodbye to a Best Friend

Here I am again, trying to formulate the words to try and explain why I lost another loved one too early in life. So permit me another off photography post…

If you follow me on Facebook, you saw that I headed back to Chicago this week to attend the funeral of my best friend. The last time I headed home was for the funeral of my father in law.

My best friend, Patty Devers passed away on February 17th. She had been to the dentist, came home, and was resting on the couch watching some tv. One minute she was fine, the next she was unconscious. What on earth could happen to cause a 46 year woman to just fall unconscious? Turns out, she had tumors all over her body, on her major organs including her heart. This caused her heart to enlarge and stop beating. No warning, no way of ever knowing.

Patty and I have known each other for over 11 years. I was a First Grade teacher in Antioch when Patty moved to the area and starting teaching a couple rooms down from me. We talked as colleagues, but nothing more. The next year her oldest son Beau was put in my first grade class. Boy, do I have some great stories of that boy. I wish I could tell you them all here. He was the tallest kid and loved hugs. So now Patty and I got to know each other as teacher and parent. I would later go on to teach her younger son Jacob in first and second grade.

A couple years later, Hillcrest Elementary was built, a new building in the district. Patty and I both ended up over there and became neighbors. This is where our friendship really started. We are very much alike…our teaching styles are very similar, both hard headed, very passionate about teaching. The district was starting the multiage program up again, and we knew that we would make the perfect team, and we did until I moved to Savannah last summer. We were the perfect team.

Patty was the first one I called when I became engaged. Patty was the first one I told when I became pregnant. Patty was the first one I confided in when we were planning a move to Savannah.  Patty was the only one I could confide in when I was frustrated with work, family, friends, husband….she knew how to sympathize when she needed to, and she knew how to knock some sense in to me when I needed it.

Some days I think I am lucky to be living a thousand miles away….I won’t have those daily reminders, I won’t have the urge to go to her classroom across the hall and talk some trash. But then I think, I am too far away…I need those daily reminders so I never forget the wonderful friendship we had. But really, can you ever forget a best friend? Please tell me you can’t, because I have never lost a best friend before.

March will be hard, Patty had just bought her plane ticket to come visit me. She hadn’t traveled much in her life, and she was excited to come see the ocean. She wanted to be like Delta Burke on Designing Women and see all the historic houses. She wanted to eat some Paula Dean southern cooking.

When I moved, Patty was worried I wouldn’t make the effort to go meet people…it was a valid worry. I prefer the comfort of familiarity. Patty confessed to me that she hated the thought I would get a new best friend in my new city…but she knew it was best for me. Well, no one will ever replace you Patty. No worries there. :)

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  • Doni

    So sorry Britt. I can’t even imagine it….

  • Sharon Miller

    Oh Britt, I’m so very sorry for your loss. That’s awful, sudden, unexpected. My prayers are with Patty’s family and with you, too.

  • I am SO sorry Britt! My love and hugs to you!

  • Missy

    Oh Britt…I’m so sorry. I couldn’t imagine losing a close friend. My thoughts and prayers are with you and her family. Big hugs from me, girl.

  • Oh Britt, I am so so sorry. I can’t even imagine. Lots of positive thoughts, hugs and vibes coming your way.

  • Diane-DB Impressions

    I’m so incredibly sorry. I can’t imagine losing one of my dear friends. :(

  • Oh, britt, I am so sorry! I’ll be thinking and praying for you, my friend!

  • Britt I am sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  • shannon kelley

    So so sorry for your loss! I’ll be praying for you and Patty’s family!

  • Oh Britt, as I read your post my heart was sinking. I am so sorry to hear of your loss, of the loss of her young family too. Although we never know when our time will come, rest assured I KNOW she is smiling down at you from above and ever so grateful to have a best friend in you.
    Thoughts and prayers.

  • so sorry for your loss Britt :(

  • I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you, as well as her family.

  • Oh how sad, I’m truly sorry for your loss, I know it must be hard and I’m sending you lots of hugs right now. I’m sure she felt the same way about you as you did about her, and its really wonderful to have such a great friendship with someone. I know you’ll miss her, but she’ll always be in your heart.

  • Renee Whiting

    Britt, I am so sorry for you loss. Patty sounds like the perfect friend, one that you’ll never forget. I’ll be sure to keep her family and you in my prayers for comfort during such a hard and unexplainable time. Big hugs!

  • Britt…I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I will pray for comfort during this hard time. ((HUGS))

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you and her family. Patty sounds like she was a wonderful friend and I know u will treasure the memories that you had with her.

  • Jaime - Dillmore Portraits

    I don’t even know how to tell you how sorry I am. No words seem to work. I will pray that God will hold you tight while you walk down this dark road, knowing that while he is holding you up, he is also holding Patty close.

  • Amy Siniscalchi

    I am just so very sorry for your loss Britt.

  • Britt,

    I’m so incredibly sorry for the loss of your friend. Many hugs.

  • Jennifer DeCesari - Rhode Island photographer

    Oh gosh Britt – I’m so sorry to hear this. Really and truly. I can’t even imagine what that must be like for you or her family. I’ve got you all in my prayers!

  • Oh Britt, I am so so sorry for your loss :( My heart just breaks for you. Please accept my deepest condolences…

  • I’m so sorry Britt – I have been keeping you in my prayers. I know this is so difficult for you.

  • charlotte stringer

    BIGGGGGGG! Big hugs to you my friend…. I was sorry to hear about that. You are in my thoughts today!

  • This is a really sad story :(
    And how come she never felt anything and ndr saw that tumor, very sad, she was really young
    now she is much better, she is with GOD and she will take care of you from there

  • Amber Debyah

    {{Britt}} My heart is aching for you! I cannot even imagine something like this happening. And without notice-not being able to say goodbye. It sounds like Patty was a wonderful friend, like a sister to you. I know she will always remian close to your heart!

  • Kim

    I am so sorry for your loss!! I know you will miss her a lot. She must have been an awesome friend! I will pray for you and her family. So sad…

  • Elaine (Frederick, MD Photographer)

    Really sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine losing one of my best friends. Hugs to you and prayers to her family.

  • Losing the people you hold so dear must be so hard and painful…I pray that you find comfort in Him during these times of sorrow. {{{Hugs}}}

  • Tyjuana Hill-Smith

    So sorry for your loss! Patty sounds like she was a great friend, and It also sounds like you have tons of great memories of her. Hold on to the memories…Patty is still there for you in spirit.

  • Jenny Jardine

    So sorry to hear about your loss Britt, I can only imagine how hard it woudld to lose a best friend. Hugs to you!

  • Rhonda

    Really sorry for you loss Britt.

  • Darlene

    Sending prayers your way for healing and peace.

  • I’m so sorry for your loss.

  • Aww Brit so sorry to hear about your precious friend.

  • Becky

    What beautiful words about your friend. She sounds like a wonderful person. I am so sorry for your loss.

  • Christy Doyea

    So sorry for you loss.

  • Time to Get Over Yourself…yeah you | Bring It In Focus

    […] two years ago, while living in Savannah, I got a phone call that my best friend had died. My best friend of 46.  She died in her sleep, and to say it was unexpected is an […]

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