On December 22, 2014, an angel named Barbara Fujikawa Simpliciano, was called home after winning her battle to lung cancer.
Barbara did not lose her battle with cancer. Instead she fulfilled her mission that God assigned her to do. In many, many ways, by inspiring and teaching her family, she won the battle in other very important ways. She was a wonderful mother, friend, supporter, and fighter right to the end. Her story written by her daughter Cassandra Simpliciano will surely bring tears of joy and help you to realize why her battle wasn't lost but won.
My Mother Barbara and I were honored to be featured on The Bald Movement as Baldies
of the Month of November 2014. Not only did her story touch the lives of people we know here
on the Island of Guam but it also touched the hearts of those scattered around the world! Many
people to this day tell me they came across our story and how inspiring and heartfelt it was to
read about why I chose to be bald.
Few weeks after our feature, we celebrated my Mother’s 60th birthday on November 23rd. All of our family and friends came together and threw her a huge fiesta fandango! Praise God that he gave my Mother the strength to get out of bed despite her excruciating pain throughout her body and allow her to celebrate her party. She was able to talk to and feel everyone who attended and stayed throughout the night. It was a beautiful day for her and everyone around her. It was also probably the very last time most saw her.
Thanksgiving evening is when Mom started declining quickly. Not only was she brought into the Emergency Room that evening but four (4) times after that until she was finally admitted for over two weeks. Family and close friends were at the hospital day in and day out visiting, praying, singing Christmas carols for her and showering her with flowers, words of encouragement and love. Mom knew her time was close and because the doctors also knew there was not much they could do at this point, we brought her home.
The only thing we focused on was making Mom as comfortable as possible. There were good days and then there were great days, where she would be able to talk, actually take a bite or two out of toast bread and tell us she “loved us more”. Then there were days of her sleeping, having seizures, unable to communicate or respond and all we could do is just make sure she her pain meds were working and she was still breathing.
My beautiful Mother, Barbara Fujikawa Simpliciano, left us to be with God in the early evening of Monday, December 22, 2014. She was surrounded by everyone. My father, myself, my siblings, our children, my grandmother, my Mother’s 7 siblings and all her nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Our immediate family totals into the hundreds so whoever could fit in my house was there. She made sure that everyone that needed to be there was in that house before she took her last breathe. While we were singing the “Divine Mercy Prayer” song over and over and telling her it was okay to let go, her breathing slowed down, and the sound of the “death rattle” in every breath she took seemed to grow faint. As she took her last big breathe, we ALL witnessed the most beautiful departure of our beautiful Mother going home. She died so peacefully and was still so beautiful taking her last breathe. At that moment, I gasped for air because I felt like my body was being lifted and I WAS GOING SOMEWHERE! There are no words to describe how it felt or how at that very moment I felt pure peace in my heart, in my mind and in my soul. I looked around and faintly cried “Did you guys feel that? Did anyone feel that?” Whether it was the Holy Spirit in that room with all of us at that moment or my mother’s spirit departing and passing through me… I then knew she was well on her way into the gates of Heaven.
She told me that when she was diagnosed with lung cancer that she was so confused, so
angry, and questioned God several times, why me? Why Me? Months passed and she realized her mission on Earth was to live a life full of love and help those in need. Love her children, love her family, love her friends, love complete strangers and help all those in need –no matter who they are. That is exactly what she did. She raised us well. She raised us to respect and love others always. We did not grow up rich. We struggled and penny pinched but she made sure her
children were fed, clothed, healthy, happy and mostly loved. Mom baked or cooked for every
party she was invited to and most times she just baked to feed people and make their day. I do
not know one person that could have something bad or negative to say about my Mother. Every
individual she has come across during her life here on Earth, she has touched their heart in one
way or another.
God must have needed her much more than we did but I am glad he took her into his
gates. Not only can she SEE us now and watch her family grow but she is no longer suffering in
excruciating pain. I know God needed her to continue her mission up there. Giving guidance to
those who need it most – those who lack faith or do not believe in God or a high being, those
who lack love in their heart, those who lack hope when all seems to fail and those who have no
peace in their mind, body or soul. My mother did that for all of us and all those who knew her.
She was just passing in this life to fulfill her mission God intended for her to do in this world
until she was called home.
Mommy: I know you have always loved my long hair but I also plan to keep my head “Bozu” (shaved / bald in our Chamorro language) for quite some time. I want to help people all
over the world, even if it’s just one person. For all women, men and children who have a heavy
cross to carry in this lifetime because just maybe if they come across our story, I will give one
person that ounce of hope, inspiration and faith to keep fighting whatever battle they are in and
never give up. Mommy, you are truly “everything I wish I could be”.We love you Mom and thank you for being our rock, our strength and our pillar. My siblings and I will continue your legacy here on Earth and make you proud. Every day of our lives we will celebrate your new life and always keep you in our hearts.
Thank you again Nell Coleman, The Bald Movement, Danielle, Madison Chin and family
and to all our family and friends across the world for helping my Mother carry her cross. You are
a blessing and we are forever grateful for each and every one of you. Your love, prayers and
support is what gave our Mother the strength to fight her battle. She did not let Cancer win.
Instead she fulfilled her mission that God assigned her to do, lived a beautiful and peaceful life
and is now in eternal paradise looking down at each and every one of you. God bless you all.