Kate Urquhart, RIP

Commenter Gex lost her partner Kate to cancer over the weekend. If you’re in the Minneapolis area, there’s a benefit show tonight at the Mall of America House of Comedy at 7:30. Tickets are available at the House of Comedy website. There’s also a Give Forward page for donations for those who are interested.






107 replies
  1. 1
    GregB says:

    Rest in peace Kate. My deep condolences to Gex.

  2. 2
    gex says:

    Much love to the Balloon Juice community. Having this site to dump my feelings out has been necessary and helpful. All the kind words you’ve sent my way mean so much. The words aren’t important. The fact that you’re thinking of me and take the time to reach out is so powerful.

    Thank you.

  3. 3
    imonlylurking says:

    I can’t make the benefit show tonight, alas-something already scheduled that I cannot change. Gex, let me know (username at yahoo.com) about the funeral/wake/whatever else gets together and I will try to be there.

  4. 4
    c u n d gulag says:

    My condolensces.

  5. 5
    Betty Cracker says:

    Much peace and strength to you, Gex. Rest in peace, Kate.

  6. 6
    Cassidy says:

    I’m sorry for your loss, Gex.

  7. 7
    Gregory says:

    Aw, no. I’m so sorry.

  8. 8
    Brachiator says:

    My deepest sympathies.

  9. 9
    icedfire says:

    I’m sorry for your loss. I can’t make it down to Bloomington tonight, unfortunately, but you are in my thoughts.

  10. 10
    satby says:

    Deepest condolences Gex. Through you, we all got to know a little bit of Kate, and for that we thank you. May she rest in peace.
    We’re here for you Gex.

  11. 11
    Felanius Kootea says:

    Gex, so sorry for your loss.

  12. 12
    burnspbesq says:

    Thoughts and prayers are with you.

  13. 13
    FoxinSocks says:

    I’m so sorry, Gex. My condolences.

  14. 14
    Matthew Reid Krell says:

    May you be comforted with all the mourners of Jerusalem and Zion, and zichrona livracha – may her memory be a blessing.

  15. 15
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    My condolences, gex.

  16. 16
    Rosalita says:

    I’m so sorry Gex. Wishing you strength and comfort in your memories. Hugs to you.

  17. 17
    Robin G. says:

    I wish I could, but the three year old would cause a ruckus. My condolences, Gex.

  18. 18

    I am so sorry to hear that. You are in my thoughts at this most difficult of times.

  19. 19
    Linda Featheringill says:

    @Matthew Reid Krell: #14

    May you be comforted with all the mourners of Jerusalem and Zion, and zichrona livracha – may her memory be a blessing.

    Eventually, memories of those we have loved and lost do become blessings. Eventually.

    I have found that grief takes about three years to work through.

    My sympathy, Gex.

  20. 20
    liberal says:

    Very sorry for your loss, gex.

  21. 21
    the Conster says:

    We were with you in spirit on this whole journey, gex – thanks for sharing such intimate information with a bunch of questionable internet characters so that we can help if you need it. May you endure through this.

  22. 22

    Damn. I’m sorry. I wish there were more I could say, but I know there isn’t.

  23. 23
    Genine says:

    My condolences… I’m so sorry for your loss.

  24. 24
    JPL says:

    @gex: Condolences, We will continue to have you in our thoughts. Grief is neither fast nor easy so lean on us anytime.

  25. 25
    gogol's wife says:

    @the Conster:

    My sentiments exactly.

  26. 26
    Kristine says:

    Deepest sympathies.

  27. 27
    dance around in your bones says:

    Gex, having recently lost my partner of 40+ years, I truly sympathize with you. They say it becomes easier with time, and I do recall my husband with laughter and love, but Gawd damn it hurts.

    It’s like a huge empty space which used to be full of love.

    Please try to take care of yourself in this difficult time.

  28. 28
    phoebes-in-santa fe says:

    So sorry. My condolences. And sometimes its easier to share with strangers on the internet than to burden our loved ones.

    BJ has some questionable – but nice – characters.

  29. 29
    YellowJournalism says:

    Best wishes for the benefit. May it be as successful a tribute as your dear Kate deserves. Our sympathies run deep.

  30. 30
    Poopyman says:

    My condolences too, Gex. I’ve been on that roller coaster ride. Like JPL said, it’ll take time. We’re here.

  31. 31
    hitchhiker says:

    I’m so sorry. Thanks for letting us stand witness with you; it’s brave and generous of you.

  32. 32
    greennotGreen says:

    Since I am currently waging a highly successful battle against ovarian cancer, I had to curse Kate’s bad luck that her cancer wasn’t discovered in time. It sucks, Gex. Remember the laughter.

  33. 33
    gex says:

    @phoebes-in-santa fe: If either of us have regrets of what was unresolved in our relationship, I think we would both think it was things on her side. She had not found a way to balance comedy and being a partner, and it was increasingly an issue. That all had to go on hold and now will never be addressed.

    Right now, all the fond memories the comedy community are recalling are nights I was left home alone again. All the care and concern for others they are recounting were things I scarcely remember feeling from her.

    I asked myself the other day. Does it matter if someone loves you if they don’t show it and you don’t feel it?

    I don’t know.

    I know those are all things I will have to work through with my therapist. I know there is greater love between us than there was friction during this transition. It just sucks so bad that we will never get to address them.

    The show tonight is going to be unbelievable. But I will be getting stabbed in the heart all night long as well.

    I will be glad to get through this night.

  34. 34
    Citizen_X says:

    My condolences, Gex. And to Kate, rest in peace.

  35. 35
    srv says:

    What dance and conster said.

    You have given a lot during this battle and not had the time to think about yourself. I hope you have the family and friends to help you through that emotional fog.

  36. 36
    Alex S. says:

    My deepest condolences.

  37. 37
    Studly Pantload, the emotionally unavailable unicorn says:

    My condolences, too, on your loss, Gex. Glad you can look to our dysfunctional little community for some measure of relief against feeling alone. May the kindness of others, online and elsewhere, give you strength and help you find peace.

  38. 38
    The Very Reverend Crimson Fire of Compassion says:

    Know that you are in our thoughts and prayers. Love is incompatible with time.

  39. 39
    gex says:

    Part of why I love Balloon Juice is because I will say these things to my therapist. But I don’t want to air our couples laundry in front of friends. Balloon Juice gives me another place to go where I can reveal more of what’s going on inside.

  40. 40
    Yutsano says:

    @gex: Much luv and otterz.

  41. 41
    johnny aquitard says:

    I am saddened to hear this. My condolences, gex.

  42. 42
    Comrade Jake says:

    Terrible news. My condolences to Gex and all of Kate’s family.

  43. 43
    Jane2 says:

    Condolences, gex. And I wish for the greatest strength for you at this time.

  44. 44
    Mary G says:

    Condolences, gex. That is so hard to get through. I hope you can take good care of yourself now.

  45. 45
    Mike in NC says:

    Deepest sympathy

  46. 46
    OmerosPeanut says:

    @gex: There is a kind of deeply moving anonymity to the Net and its communities. I hope we can continue to fill that role for you and any others here who might need it.

    My mother passed away three years ago from lung cancer that was not even diagnosed until five days before her death. Nor was I allowed to visit until only twelve hours before she slipped into a coma.

    The thoughts of things unsaid, particularly the ones you never thought to say until after – those will hurt far longer than the loss itself will. Do whatever you need to do to help with those feelings, and in the right time. There is a time and place for everything.

    Again, my deepest sympathies.

  47. 47
    Flukebucket says:

    My deepest sympathy.

  48. 48
    El Cid says:

    My condolences. I hope those around you may provide strength.

  49. 49
    gelfling545 says:

    Deepest condolences to you. Hold on to the thought that one day you will be able to remember her with joy instead of tears.

  50. 50
    geg6 says:

    My deepest sympathies to gex.

    A very good friend of mine lost her longtime partner this past year to cancer, too. In this case, breast cancer. It’s very difficult, but, hopefully, the tears eventually pass and it’s the good times that you remember best.

  51. 51
    eemom says:

    @gex:

    In addition to offering my condolences I want to say how very impressed I’ve been by the courage with which you’ve confronted those enormous conflicts you’ve been suffering from alongside the grief, and the clarity with which you’ve expressed them here. I don’t think a lot of people in your situation would be able to do that.

    I also hope, and believe, that this will enable you to heal sooner than if you tried to suppress them.

    Again, peace be with you.

  52. 52
    jeffreyw says:

    Mrs J and I send our condolences, RIP Kate.

  53. 53
    Ivan Ivanovich Renko says:

    Deepest condolences, Gex.

  54. 54
    artem1s says:

    So sorry to hear about your loss. Hope you have plenty of family and friends near to help you through these tough times.

  55. 55

    You have my deepest condolences, Gex. It’s hard even when you know it’s coming. Peace be with you and your loved ones.

    <3

  56. 56
    Jewish Steel says:

    Ah, very sad. So sorry here.

  57. 57
    General Stuck says:

    RIP Kate.

    Be kind to yourself, Gex.

  58. 58
    JCT says:

    Strong thoughts your way, Gex. Hopefully you will gain solace from the fact that you were there for her at her moment of greatest need and made sure that her wishes were respected. One of the greatest gifts that anyone can give a loved one.

    And be sure to take care of yourself.

  59. 59
  60. 60
    Ash Can says:

    Once again, sincerest condolences, and may you find much support among family, friends, your therapist, and even in places like here. If we cranks and grouches here can be a help to you, it’s all good.

  61. 61
    CorbinDallasMultipass says:

    Sympathies, so sorry. :(

  62. 62
    Soonergrunt says:

    Gex,
    I’m so sorry to hear about your Kate. You have my deepest sympathies.

  63. 63
    Ash Can says:

    And PS —

    @eemom:

    In addition to offering my condolences I want to say how very impressed I’ve been by the courage with which you’ve confronted those enormous conflicts you’ve been suffering from alongside the grief, and the clarity with which you’ve expressed them here. I don’t think a lot of people in your situation would be able to do that.

    Seconded.

  64. 64
    Cassidy says:

    @gex: I understand. My wife and her friend will sometimes have conversations of nostalgia, and they happen to coincide with the worst days of my life (no hyperbole). I don’t know if she realizes it, but I just leave. I have to or all the things I pushed down deep start coming back and I don’t want to feel that way.

    I’d say you just gotta let it go, but who am I to talk.

  65. 65
    gex says:

    @eemom: Been doing my work in therapy!

    @Ash Can: Cranks and grouches? My people!

  66. 66
    David Hunt says:

    I’ve striven to come up with something comforting, but my inadequate skills leave me with only being able to say:

    My condolences on your loss.

  67. 67
    'Niques says:

    I am so sorry to hear this, Gex. I wish you peace and warm thoughts in your time of healing.

  68. 68
    Alison says:

    Many condolences to Gex and to all of Kate’s loved ones. RIP.

  69. 69
    J. Michael Neal says:

    Condolences. I don’t know if I can make it down to the MoA this evening, but I’ll give it a try.

  70. 70
    jgaugust says:

    My condolences Gex.

  71. 71
    Johnnybuck says:

    I am so sorry for your loss but I am a great admirer of your strength and dignity throughout this time.

  72. 72
    Valdivia says:

    Deep condolences Gex. And warmest of hugs.

  73. 73
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Hugs to you. Having been one of those leaving a loved one alone and only realizing how truly awful she had felt when it was too late to make amends, I feel for both of you.

  74. 74
    Ohio Mom says:

    So sorry for your loss. Hoping you find peace and comfort –Please remember to be very kind and compassionate to yourself in the coming days and weeks.

  75. 75
    mvr says:

    My condolences. That’s really hard.

  76. 76
    asiangrrlMN says:

    @gex: Oh, gex. I’m so fucking sorry. I only met Kate once, but what a funny, wonderful woman she was. My deepest condolences and hugs.

  77. 77
    mai naem says:

    Gex condolences. Look after yourself. You are going to have people coming up to you in the next few weeks and telling you about their memories about Kate and you’re going to come away in the best way, with a much fuller picture of Kate. Loved ones don’t realize the impact a person had on different people until they die.

  78. 78
    Darkrose says:

    I’m so sorry, Gex. We’re all thinking of you.

  79. 79
    The Moar You Know says:

    If either of us have regrets of what was unresolved in our relationship, I think we would both think it was things on her side. She had not found a way to balance comedy and being a partner, and it was increasingly an issue. That all had to go on hold and now will never be addressed.

    Right now, all the fond memories the comedy community are recalling are nights I was left home alone again. All the care and concern for others they are recounting were things I scarcely remember feeling from her.

    @gex: First, my deep condolences. I cannot imagine.

    Second, to address something you mention. Maybe it will help. Maybe it will not. I hope it helps.

    I am fortunate enough to be married to someone who also has an overriding performance passion. I am a musician. She is a dancer.

    Neither of us needs to explain or justify. Some nights, you do go to bed alone. Some months, sometimes.

    But I wouldn’t take it away from her for the world. Nor would she do that to me. We both understand just how precious what we each do is; and there is a time limit on our careers, especially hers. We gotta perform while we still can.

    For example, I could have given her a nice piece of jewelry for her birthday. Instead, I’m sending her to New York for a month to take classes at one of the most prestigious dance schools in the world. One way of looking at this is that we’re spending a month apart. The way we look at it, I just gave her thirty days of presents.

    We are lucky. We could not have married non-performers. It became a real issue for both of us in our late thirties and early forties, before we met again (long story) as we would not give up what we loved. And those who we dated or were in relationships with inevitably asked us to.

    I see much of the angst you are describing in couples where one person is a performer and one is not. It frequently does not get resolved in a manner that leads to the preservation of the relationship. But try to look at it this way: every night alone, you gave her a gift beyond price. She literally never had a way she could have paid you back for that.

    Godspeed, Kate. Gex, I wish you reconciliation if you want it, and healing.

  80. 80
    Svensker says:

    All blessings.

    One word of advice — it’s OK to be angry and hurt. You’re not bad if that’s how you feel. You loved a person, not a saint, and people don’t always do the right things at the right time…even people we love and miss huge big bunches. Whatever your feelings, they are real and worthy of respect.

    End of sermon.

    Big big hugs.

  81. 81
    Elie says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    But try to look at it this way: every night alone, you gave her a gift beyond price. She literally never had a way she could have paid you back for that.

    Beautiful.

  82. 82
    Elie says:

    Gex:

    My condolences to you. You will miss her, but in some ways, she will always be there. The past and present fuse in thinking about someone you love. I can always hear my Dad’s laughter and remember the “sense” of him, though he has been gone 5 years now…

  83. 83
    Unabogie says:

    @gex:

    So sorry to hear this. I mostly lurk, but this is just terrible and you have virtual hugs from strangers coming your way, even people you didn’t even know cared.

  84. 84
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    I read the link this weekend and was so sorry to hear you lost your partner. Condolences. My heart aches for you, not just for what you have lost, but for what might have been. Be kind to yourself in the days ahead.

  85. 85
    Fort Geek says:

    For what it’s worth, you have my condolences.

  86. 86
    Karen in GA says:

    Aw, hell, Gex, I’m so sorry.

  87. 87
    kc says:

    Gex, my condolences to you.

  88. 88
    Tom Levenson says:

    So sorry. My deepest sympathy to you, Gex.

  89. 89
    Keith G says:

    Gex, she sure sounds like an awesome person and it seems like the two of you gave so much.

    My thoughts are with you.

    edit noticed this was not linked

  90. 90
    TooManyJens says:

    My condolences, Gex.

  91. 91
    Josie says:

    @Svensker: This is so true. I could not have said it better. I’m sorry for your loss, Gex. Time will be your friend.

  92. 92
    thalarctos says:

    Gex, I am so sorry. Wishing you all love and support.

  93. 93
    eric says:

    @gex: yes, because there are real people here who struggle and suffer and rejoice and lament and excoriate and simply “be” in authentic ways. Feeling is as encouraged as thinking here. My thoughts and my feelings are with you. The only thing I will add is that when my mother passed after a three year battle of cancer, I could stop hating the phone because every time that damn thing rang I thought it was the call of doomed so i lived on frayed edges the entire time. Of course it was nothing like her suffering, but as i became less freaked by the phone as was also coming to remember the love and the good instead of the pain. Godspeed to you and the recovery of your spirit.

  94. 94
    gbear says:

    All the care and concern for others they are recounting were things I scarcely remember feeling from her.

    Gex, I am so sorry for your loss but I had to pull down that quote because it is so much of how my sisters and I felt at our mother’s funeral. The minister was describing a woman that I didn’t know, and it was surprising to find out that my youngest sister (16 years younger) had exactly the same experience.

    I’m surprised at how many Twin City people are responding in this thread. I will not be at the MOA event this evening and I can understand why it may feel like being in a hail of arrows to you. I hope that time will help you heal and that time and therapy will help you regain a perspective that frees you from anger, guilt and self-judgement.

    Maybe the Twin Cities Balloon Juice community should find a time and place to get together that has more pleasant memories for you (on a day when it’s not many degrees below zero). Please accept my deep condolences for your loss and your struggles.

    Al in St. Paul

  95. 95
    Cluttered Mind says:

    I’m far more of a lurker here than I am an active participant in conversations…but I don’t really have the words to express my sympathies. All I can say is that it’s okay to have conflicting feelings about this, it’s okay to mourn her while still being angry about how the last few months played out. No matter what you’re feeling, it’s okay. Something like this doesn’t have a “right” way that you’re supposed to go about it, and as far as I’m concerned, the strength of your feelings, no matter what it is you’re feeling, just speak to the connection the two of you had and the impact she made on your life. Do what you have to do to care for yourself and stay healthy mentally and physically, because at this point taking good care of yourself is the best way to honor her memory. You’ve got to go on.

  96. 96
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Gex, my condolences again.

  97. 97
    Debbie(Aussie) says:

    Deepest condolences, Gex.

  98. 98
    Schlemizel says:

    GEX – I totally understand mixed emotions upon the loss of a loved one. There are very few people in the world who have a ‘perfect’ relationship with someone else. Often times death can highlight the hurts along with the love. Too often we beat ourselves up over any anger we may have over the hurts. We shouldn’t. It was OK to be angry with her when she was alive, you should feel no shame or guilt if you still have anger or hurt, just don’t let it eat you up.

    It took me a long time to forgive my father after he died but I needed to. He was as much a victim of his life as I was. Let yourself grieve in all its aspects then forgive her her failings. Focus on the good times and the love you shared.

    I wish I was able to donate more than the pittance I can afford. I have no idea what your expenses have been but imagine they might be burdensome. please ask for help if you need to, emotional or monetary, this is a great community who rally for pets and people.

  99. 99
    jl says:

    So sorry to hear the sad news. My condolences and best wishes.

  100. 100
    Beeb says:

    I am so sorry. Deepest sympathy, Gex.

  101. 101
    WereBear says:

    Gex, I hope you find healing in the future from this terrible loss. You didn’t give it in the expectation of getting it back right away. You gave because you loved.

    It’s terrible she didn’t get a chance to sort through everything (and it seemed there was a lot) but you know, in time, she would have.

    I’m sure she thought there would be time.

  102. 102
    Rome Again says:

    Aww Gex, I’m so sorry to hear this. My heart goes out to you.

  103. 103
    Edo says:

    My heart is broken for you, Gex. Anything else I can think to say feels twee and trite tonight.

    Hugs. And echoing eemom, peace be with you.

  104. 104
    gex says:

    @The Moar You Know: That would have been almost every night, then. There’s an open mic every night. And she could scarcely spare one of them to spend an evening with me.

    I was more than supportive of her comedy career and I don’t think asking for an evening every now and then to do something with me (rather than sit in front of her computer tweeting with her comic friends) would have been too much to ask.

    I don’t feel I was asking her to give up any of that. But when she cancelled our anniversary plans to go out to dinner with a comic friend (not even for going on stage) it becomes about more than performance. Whatever. Your comment just leads me to believe that most people should never consider being in a relationship with a performer. If there’s never room for the non-performer’s wants and needs, it’s not a relationship.

    She always said people shouldn’t date comics and that comedy was really hard on relationships. She was right.

  105. 105
    Elizabelle says:

    Gex: thinking of you. Hope last night’s benefit was successful.

    I’m so sorry Kate did not get a longer life, although it sounds like it was a full one.

  106. 106
    slightly_peeved says:

    My condolences. take care of yourself.

  107. 107
    Mandarama says:

    Thinking of you, gex. The feelings you’re expressing are so normal and understandable…please don’t feel bad about expressing your real struggles here. Wishing you peace in your future, and warmth in your memories.

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