Saturday, March 1, 2008

Sometimes...

Sometimes, you can't find the words to say to a friend or loved one who is sick.
Sometimes you just want to hug them.
Sometimes you can't hug them because they are too far away - so words are all you have left.
Sometimes you just want to tell them how special they are and what a positive difference they have made in this world.
Sometimes you just want to cry.
Sometimes you get mad, angry and confused as the "why" is this happening.
Sometimes you feel blessed for ever even knowing them.

I read somewhere that if a friend is down with the flu or has a stay in the hospital, you stop by the card shop or the grocery and pick up a card that says “Thinking of you” or makes cute little jokes about doctors and hospital gowns that open in the back. But suppose your friend or your brother or sister or your mother or father receives the news: cancer. Mastectomy. Chemotherapy. Radiation. Bone Marrow transplant. “Get well soon” suddenly seems very inadequate. What do you say to someone who may, in fact, be dying? Many people, in their discomfort, simply avoid contact at all, depriving the patient of comfort when it is needed most. Some try to act "normal" - because maybe that is what this friend needs...some normalcy in a time when nothing is normal anymore. Other's try to give advice and as much support as possible. Which person am I? I think a combination...

Am I the selfish one to get sad to think of a sick friend? Am I wrong to take this happening to try to re-evaluate my life and truly "live"? Or is this all part of "the plan"? Are we meant to learn from one person's hardships? Was this person brought into my life because of this? Or because of the many other wonderful things they have taught me and we have shared?

I pray for the strength of my friend Mark, his wife Amy, and their daughter Abby. He has reached 6 months since learning about his CML (Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia) and is dealing with this better than I think anyone I know could. If you would like to read more about Mark and his journey - please check out www.caringbridge.org/visit/markgardner.

3 comments:

Melissa Jones Photography said...

My cousin Olivia who is 7 is battling cancer. It is very hard for family to go on there and read the updates (probably because we went through the same battle with my brother when he was younger). My aunt Taryn writes almost everyday and not just about Olivia but others on J5. Anyway, I encourage you to read her entry at least once. www.caringbridge.org/visit/olivialangwasser

WineLover said...

It is really, really sad and difficult to see friends and family deal with this stuff and I think it really should be an eye-opener and life lesson for us. When my best friend's husband died in 2001, that changed my life forever and I learned many things from that.
I think as a friend, you do the best you can to be there and be helpful but also to let them know how deeply this affects you too -

We have friends that are going through this right now also (my BTeam friends- he's got 4th stage lung cancer) - it's heartbreaking for all involved. My prayers are with Mark and his family and friends.

Ashli Coburn said...

I actually didn't make those cards smell. After hours of trying I gave up. Kool aid was the best thing that worked for me. But like you said the smell wasn't strong. I am going to try a few things today and I will let you know if they work!