Pam's Remembrance of Meg Zupancic
Our dear friend from college, Meg Zupancic, passed away thirteen years ago, October 7. There were complications during the birth of her second child, Toby. Her first-born, Max was only two years old. We still think of her often. In fact, when our own daughter was born, we gave her "Margaret" as a middle name to honor Meg's memory.
Pam wrote this remembrance of Meg on the one year anniversary of her passing. I had forgotten about it until it came up in Facebook memories. I'm adding it to my website, along with the pictures I shared of her, so that I'm not dependent on Facebook. Our heart goes out to all of our friends, Meg's friends, her parents (Ernie and Madeline), her sister Nellie and her husband Jon, their kids; and of course Meg's husband Bill, and their two boys, Max and Toby. May her memory continue to be a blessing.
One year ago today, we lost our dear friend Meg Zupancic. It’s hard to believe it’s been a year and sometimes it’s still hard to believe it actually happened. There is no way that we can capture who Meg was in a few sentences. We have so many wonderful memories of her. Sometimes we shared hysterical laughter (Meg put her whole heart and soul into her laughter, laughing with her whole body at life’s little absurdities. Sometimes she would crack up hysterically over just a funny sounding word, like “rotimer.” Her laughter was infectious). Other times she would just make us smile with a dry joke or comment. Every time I got a letter or card from her it was addressed to “Pam ‘the non-stick spray’ Stumpo.” There were times we cried together and hundreds of times we just had great conversations over cups of tea, chips and salsa or boxes of Annie’s mac and cheese (Meg was never overweight, but had no interest in counting calories).
She was a great conversationalist and could talk about a history book she was reading for pleasure as easily as she could explain her research to me (a very non-science oriented person). She was the kind of friend who, although we didn’t talk everyday, we knew we could always call and who quietly and without fuss always took time out of her busy schedule to get on a train or drive a distance to see us. Seeing her always brought the comfort of an old friend who knows you well, knows your history, appreciates your friendship (Meg told me on more than one occasion how much she appreciated my listening to her and how glad she was to be part of our group of friends) and supports you no matter what the circumstances. She was there to support us during all of life’s major events from the time we were 19 years old (our dating, our wedding, my graduate program) and many of life’s smaller ones.
The last time we saw Meg in person, we had dinner (or lunch? – I can’t remember) with her and Bill in CT. Then, we spent the day together – visiting the Wesleyan bookstore, going to Kleikolo coffee shop. As they were leaving, Meg was putting on her shoes and we were all talking (and joking) about baby names (Meg was pregnant at the time). We commented on what a great day we’d all had and said we should all get together more often. Meg and I talked about how great it was that we were able to pick up where we left off, even though we didn’t see each other that often.
Our last communication was an exchange of emails a while after that. I had taken a long time to respond to an email from her and then she had taken a long time to respond back to me. With classic Meg humor, she opened her email with something like, “Now it’s my turn to apologize for not emailing sooner. We’ve had problems with the internet and the dog ate my homework.” But, again then we picked up where we left off as if no time had passed, sharing our academic stresses.
I hope someday when my time comes, we’re able to pick up where we left off again. Neil and I have lost something irreplaceable in Meg’s friendship. It’s a rare gift to have a friend who has been in your life that long, always listens, makes you laugh and makes you feel that loved and appreciated. We will always love her and miss her.
Some of our favorite pictures of Meg