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Friendship

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

There is nothing that will test your friendships more, or cause your relationships to build and mature, than death and grieving. I am honored and privileged to have the incredibly strong friendships that remain . They have continued to build, mature, strengthen, and deepen. The friendships that have remained firm are those that have continued to come towards me. They did not just say, “You know I am here if you need me. Just give me a call.” These friends took the initiative and called to check in with me on a continual basis and offered their ear, shoulder, or their time. One of these friends came over one day just for five minutes, arrived with a flower from her garden and said, “I just had to see you because I would know how you were doing if I could look you in the eyes.” Once she looked intently into my eyes, and gave me a hug, she was off. We were both satisfied. After speaking to countless people who have suffered a loss, they all contend that calling someone for help or a need is not something that they did, even though the invitation was put out there by very well meaning friends. During this stage of grieving, it requires too much strength and effort to reach out most all of the time. We cannot think or take our emotions very far beyond our little grief boundaries. Others are welcome to enter into those boundaries but it is not often that we leave those boundaries looking for a listening ear or help in any way. We need the support to come to us.

With that said, I want to thank and honor my friends who have continued to come and have had the courage to enter into the grief boundaries that have surrounded me this past year. They have been giving and giving without expecting anything in return…. and that is what has spurned me to write this. It has been a one sided friendship this year. I have had to take, and take, and take, and have had absolutely nothing to give. Any phone conversations that I have had took place because they called me. I did not do much calling at all this year. For most of the year I could hardly even ask simple questions like, “So how is life? What have you been up to lately?” I honestly had a difficult time caring about the daily grind in anybody’s life outside of my boundaries. Nothing but life and love mattered. Some of these friends have gone through their own trials this past year, but I would not have known it because they did not want to burden me with any of their problems and add anything to my plate. They were there for me and I did not even know that they had a need…. and yet they gave. This has hurt me to see this happen because it feels like seeing someone who needs help but your hands are tied behind you and you are strapped to a chair. I love being a friend to my friends. I love doing little things, sending notes or little gifts, or taking walks together. In my heart, I wanted to be more of a friend in return for them, but I could not physically do it. The ability is slowly, ever so slowly, beginning to emerge. It won’t magically change after the one year anniversary either, which means my friends will continue to hang in there with me, within my boundaries, as those boundaries expand and broaden a little more each day.

I have been so blessed to have a beautiful, small, but tight, circle of friends who have taken turns holding my hand this year and each offering of themselves and their own individual gifts that God gave them to me.

1 comments:

Anonymous Says:
March 7, 2012 at 12:48 PM
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