I know this subject is hard. It feels like I am dripping in emotion this week as I write more and more in this series Bringing Small Comforts. I know this isn't the fun stuff that we usually talk about on blogs, especially one that is supposed to be about gifts and gift wrapping. I have written ahead a bit so I will admit that it is a draining subject for me to write and for you to read. Then I think to myself "I feel drained? So what? This is not about me and so for now we are going to keep talking about support until I am wrung dry or you tell me to stop, whatever comes first. OK? I promise some pretty "doorstep" gifts and gift wrapping are ahead.
We can have lots of excuses when we look for them, but nobody can really say I don't have time, I'm too busy. Not when someone is sick, alone, bored, worried, and needs her close circle of friends. It is that simple. "I don't have time, I'm too busy" is such an overused expression these days. We use it so easily and so conveniently that we really should give our heads a shake or two don't you think? I am not even talking about saying it out loud, heaven forbid it always sounds downright ridiculous, I am talking about telling ourselves this exact excuse in order to avoid something that we perceive as uncomfortable, awkward, unthinkable. Fellow blogger Trish Jett of A Femme d'un Certain Age commented to me that when two friends were faced with cancer she asked them what she could do to bring them pleasure, Anything in her power she told them....... anything. "Just come and see me, don't avoid me, talk to me" . There it is in a nutshell don't you think? Don't avoid me. Our hearts may be there with them in illness or grief, but we avoid looking them in the eye. The mind shuffles itself in a protective manner and visiting the friend you love while they are in pain or suffering is way too painful for some, for many of us. Every instinct tells us to look away. So what am I saying in this most awkward way? I am repeating this isn't about you. You call, you call again, and get over there and sit with your friend and just visit. Just grab your keys and go. Short visits. Frequent visits. Don't give her the chance to say "don't worry about it, I know you are busy". Her reply is female code for "I know how uncomfortable this is for you". Pay no attention and go as often as you can, make it comfortable. Be a pest. Look her in the eye. Be a good listener. We can do this.
Photo from Photographer's Limited editions via the blog Beautiful Things To Share/blog link to A Femme d'un Certain Age