Loss of the Bravest of Beast Tamers, Loss of an Angel.

This beautiful shining girl is my dear friend Marianne Morris. I first met her 30 years ago and we loved each other from the very first moment. Marianne and I were among the first people in the world known to suffer from massive immune system failure exhibiting as near global allergies and overwhelming, life-threatening chemical sensitivities. After an extended stay in hospital in Toronto, I had been told that I had “20th Century disease”, “like the Boy in the Plastic Bubble” and that there was little they could do for me. The prognosis was poor; I was expected to die from the near constant anaphylactic reactions I was suffering, but I decided I did not want to die in the hospital, so I left. Marianne had had a very similar experience after being exposed to a chemical spill in the hospital where she worked as a newly certified speech pathologist, although her reactions were primarily central nervous system mediated, and in the place of life threatening anaphylactic laryngeal oedema, she experienced life threatening allergic seizures. I experienced this life altering change at the age of 19, she at 21 years of age. She was some 4 years older than I, and when we met, I knew nothing; she had spent those years since becoming ill in research and in learning every possible way to live with this strange and terrible disease. I would probably never have survived without her.

We have spent much of the intervening years apart, as we were better in different climates, but we always kept contact, and the love between us was a steady light in my life. When I became pregnant with twins in my mid-twenties, and was overwhelmed with fear about how my body would deal with the challenge (though I wanted them so badly), it was Marianne who put her hands on my belly, gave Reiki to me and my babies, and somehow made me believe that everything would be alright. She greeted every struggle, every challenge with nearly unshakeable optimism, her sunny smile and open heart a gift to anyone who came in contact with her, most of whom never knew the hell she experienced every day in just trying to survive. She had the spirit of a child, the heart of an angel, and the courage of a lion. She was the most loving and caring and shining of souls that I have ever known.

Meanwhile, life was not kind to Marianne. Her condition waxed and waned but never stabilized for long. Every basic need to maintain life was a terrible struggle to obtain; even finding tolerated water was a hideous and continuous challenge. We had both had numerous terrible, traumatizing experiences at the hands of both medical “professionals” and government lackeys; she not only fell through all the cracks, but finally refused to accept any more “help” from either of those sources and was determined to be independent, to find a way to survive, and a way to become well… by herself. The people who should and could have helped her never did. She dreamed and dreamed of a home, just a tiny little place to call her own and it never happened; she was homeless for decades, living either in brutally inappropriate, unsafe conditions, or, more often, in her car. Marianne was family to me and my family; we begged her to come and live with us, but after all she had been through she was afraid of losing our love if she was to become “dependant”. She wouldn’t have been; it would have been a joy and a privilege and mutually beneficial to have her join our family as a full time member. She sometimes almost made it; we would make plans, begin to set them in place, and each time, something happened to prevent her from coming.

She suffered terribly through illnesses that would have killed any being of lesser will. Living through such deprivation and so many complex health challenges, she suffered more and chronic pain over time. Yet she healed herself of infections and injuries and exacerbations of her condition with herbs and homeopathics and intuition and her massive knowledge of alternative medicine. And meanwhile, Marianne never stopped trying to make the world a better place. She took in a dog deemed “vicious” and sentenced to die; she treated his central nervous system dysfunction with all of her wide knowledge and skill and healed him. Joey became her life companion and the most noble, loving partner she could ever have had. She worked tirelessly in the mountain communities in which she lived to try to educate people about bears and how to live with them so that they would not be needlessly killed. She dreamed of one day being able to create a wild life rescue organization that would treat animals with herbal and energetic medicines. She so badly wanted to give. Marianne would lend a hand to anyone in need… and yet she was in such dire need so much of her life, and so few people reached out to help her.

After Joey’s death she became more frail with every passing year. When she finally became so ill that her weight dropped to 75 lbs, she refused medical care, still traumatized by the many horrific and abusive medical experiences of her life. I now believe that she had been suffering all those years from Mast Cell Disease, and that there may have been treatment for her, but the information about this possibility came too late. She became deeply despondent and confused, and in the end, my shining friend Marianne died in hospital (I can only believe against her will), among strangers, never having been given a chance to have a home of her own, any kind of quality of life, or any opportunity to fully bloom, to express and be recognized for the great body of knowledge and gifts of spirit that were so much a part of her. I lost one of the dearest friends of my life, yesterday, December 23rd, 2013, at 5am. This world lost more than it will ever know.

Author: Lili Wilde
Date Posted: 2013-12-24   Date Last Edited: 2013-12-25 01:56:42

Comments (5)

Topic: Loss of the Bravest of Beast Tamers, Loss of an Angel. - Taming The Beast
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14th December 2017 1:25am
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nancy hicks (Canada) says...
I am reading this again Lili .. and Marianne's story brings tears once again. You two sound like a wonderful pair. Fighters and activists. THoughts and reflections of how badly our society is set up to help the weak .. and how slow it has been for change concerning our 21 century illness.. brings longings to have more energy for personal action . It is difficult to find the balance between feeling we can contribute something with having such challenging bodys . Best wishes Marianne ... Read More
2nd February 2014 8:49am
Lili Wilde (Canada) says...
Thank you so much, Nancy. It means a great deal to me that she be remembered... and yes, I too, long to see positive change... before it is too late. Thank you for your kind thoughts. <3
23rd February 2014 6:21pm
Mary (Australia) says...
I am so sorry for your great loss Lili, she certainly sounds like being a trailblazer, who fought a battle with outstanding courage. Vale Marianne
25th December 2013 1:25pm
Lili Wilde (Canada) says...
Thankyou so much, Mary. Marianne was indeed a courageous as well as a special and loving person. I appreciate your kind comment, and your thoughts. It matters so much to me that Marianne not just be forgotten.
All the best;
13th January 2014 6:36pm
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