Eleanor Anne O’Connell Decret, fighter, writer, designer, inspiration, and most importantly, my mother, passed away two weeks ago. Despite her putting so much of her life on her blog to the public, she was a private person when the times got tough. There were ups and downs, and she shared most all of these moments but because of her humor, she never let anyone know when times got really bad. She passed away peacefully in her Montecito home, surrounded by loved ones on August 30th, 2016. (Someone also told me it is the same date Princess Diana died but Paris time. If true, this would have made her so morbidly happy) It is not up to me to give more details even though I know people want as much as they can get as her story is ending. I like to think it was just me that she was fighting to stay alive for, but I know it was a mixture of me and you -- all of you. She thrived on your comments and cards; cheering her up even in her darkest days. Some of you have been following her from the very beginning, all the way back in 2008 I think. She had always been a great writer and finally found an outlet where she was able to say whatever the fuck she wanted, with no repercussions as it was all hers. I am not a writer like she was, I don’t know how to write a touching tribute to her for all of you to read so I thought I could share some little bits about her that I don’t think she has written about (maybe she just deemed them unimportant, but now they all seem important).
Secretly her favorite restaurant was the French Market in Disneyland California. It the only place we eat when we go to Disneyland; she loved the buffet of French Dip Sandwiches and Mac and Cheese and an icy cold Coca Cola.
She once gave away my dog while I was at school. She said he was ugly (he was a Chihuahua, so fair enough).
But she also once surprised me with a new bike in our yard when I was at school.
Her favorite book was A Prayer for Owen Meany. (My aunt has had a copy of it for 6 years but still hasn't read it. )
When I was 16, I went to Times Square. Without an adult. And she found out. I had to wait inside TGIF’s until she personally escorted me home in a cab. That was the closest Ive been to death so far.
She loved a good theme. Most of my Christmas presents had a theme if I had expressed an interest in anything about a month before December. I took a painting class in 5th grade, and all my presents that year were art themed, the next year, horses.
Everyday after school we would go to Jamba Juice and we would split a chocolate cherry smoothie and a parmesan soft pretzel.
Her favorite holiday for decorating the house was Halloween. She would use tea to dye cloth and drape them all over the house. We had these skull lanterns that are still somewhere in storage, that lined our walk way up to our front door where she would only buy white or green-grey pumpkins. Hated it as a kid, think it looks amazing now and will never buy an orange pumpkin.
Her last meal was Taco Bell, so she died happy.
Her most embarrassing moment was when she ran into her ex French boyfriend in Paris, coming out of Zara covered in dog poop.
I know she would have loved Rob & Chyna on E! that came out a few days ago, if she had known it was premiering so soon, she would have hung on a little longer I think.
She used to steal Hydrangea’s from our neighbors, which Yolanda would then steal from us.
She wanted to be remembered as mother and when I asked her if there was anything else, she said no, that was the most important aspect of her life.
Somehow, even though she was just a head, she wrote a book. She left a great legacy of sharing her story with everyone who needed some inspiration. Especially for those when nothing seems to be going their way. I know all of you wanted her to keep fighting but the truth is, she was tired; we were all tired. She worked constantly on her book and now it has become a way for her to be forever with us through her story. We wanted to reopen the sale of my mom’s book, as I will not be able to keep up her blog to her high standards. She had a sense of humor that no one, not even Chelsea Handler could compete with. Her voice was so clear in her writings, sometimes too clear even. She had the ability to connect and automatically be loved by all even if she was insulting you, a truly unique trait of her. People just loved to be around her.
I want to thank everyone for their support and kind words. It is truly remarkable seeing all this support from people all over the world. She is still here though, I can feel her haunting me sometimes.