On Gratitude

Gratitude – a challenge hosted by Maria. I am sure you are welcome to join in.


This winter, some amazing people passed away – I guess you all know their names right know when reading this… But, Birgitta and Stig are not the names you are thinking of.

Birgitta was a tough woman with a warm and generous heart, who raised her two girls alone, when she finally managed to divorce her alcohol addicted husband. For about 20 years she was my hairdresser, and I think you all know that many people confide in their hairdressers – their social skills are extensive.

Birgitta developed a disease very few people know about – systemic sclerosis. The same illness unfortunately has come to Dr. Gunhild Stordalen, the Norwegian tycoon Petter Stordalen’s wife.

Birgitta fought bravely for many years, but this disease is lethal, and in the end she had lost several fingers and both her legs. This winter, her battered body could not take it any longer. She wanted so much to live, and had several ongoing projects until the end…She even went to the Maldives last year – a dream of hers come true. But finally, she had to surrender.

Birgitta was a very talented woman with many interests. She was intellectual and well read. We always said that we should have met long ago. In a way we were twin souls. She died 76 years old, but without her strong determination to survive, she would have been gone several years ago.

Stig was my husband’s best friend. A man with a big, warm heart, and the most honest and straightforward man I have ever known. This of course meant that he had enemies, but most people loved him for it. Not many of us dare to be as upright as he was. Whatever happened, he stayed strong, told the truth and stuck to it.

My husband and I were guests at Stig’s and Lena’s house several times a year, and they were the perfect hosts. And they visited us as well. They came to our summer house, and we enjoyed the sun and the sea – and some tasty summer food. Stig and Lena were the perfect couple even though they met rather late in life.

Stig was the planner of everything from parties to big events and sports competitions. The borne leader in his profession and also in his spare time. He had friends in every corner of Sweden. When he retired two years ago, he had many projects for their house and garden, and continued training the soccer team, playing tennis and collecting autographs from all over the world. Buying and selling. They also loved to travel, Stig and Lena, even if they had to leave their beloved dog, Soda, at home.

Stig got cancer that spread fast into his whole body. This tall, handsome, strong man was reduced to nothing within a year and a half. He died, 68 years old, February 15. Yesterday we went to his funeral, and the church was filled to the last seat.


I am so very grateful to have known Birgitta and Stig. They enriched my life and they will live forever in their friends’, families’ and collegues’ hearts. And in mine.


32 comments on “On Gratitude

  1. A-C, truly beautiful … ! You will never be alone after having amazing people like this in your lives. They will always keep our hearts warm forever .. and they are only a breath away.

  2. Vilken fin hyllning! Starka personer som de vänner lever vidare, även om det är en hård förlust när de lämnar vår vardag. Din hyllning till deras minne, och din tacksamhet över deras vänskap är inspirerande.

    Min mamma, och min mormor, är borta sedan många år, men jag hör deras visdom och skratt varje dag. De är alltid med mig.

    Kramar ❤

    • Tack, Maria. Du har mist både mamma och mormor? min mamma lever och mår bra, och fyller 81 nu. Min älskade mormor gick bort innan vi fick barnen, och det tänker jag på ibland…hon ville så gärna att vi skulle ha barn. Hon är också med mig – alltid.

      • Jag var 12 när mamma dog, så det var ett tag sen, 19 när mormor dog. Jag är mycket tacksam för att både mamma och mormor prioriterade att tillbringa mycket tid med oss barn, något som jag försöker att tänka på med min egen dotter. Tid tillsammans är det mest värdefulla som finns. Kram

      • Det är det. Jag stannade hemma med mina barn i fem år – något jag aldrig ångrat. Så blev de också harmoniska. Jag vill tro att det spelade roll.

  3. My heart hurts from reading this, so I can only imagine a small amount of the pain you must be feeling. You have such great memories of these beautiful people who so enriched your life and the lives of others and that, although hard to realize now, is a blessing that will remain with you and all who knew them.


  4. Beautiful tribute, Leya. Birgitta and Stig sounded like forces to be reckoned with, and they touched so many people’s hearts from such kind character. They won’t be forgotten ❤

  5. Sounds like two very loveble personalities. Sorry for your losts but I can see the gratitude to have known friends like that. That is one of lifes greatest gifts.

Halva verket är läsarens - så, vad säger Du? As the second half is the reader's - I'd love to have Your line!

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