Today was a challenging day for me. As fate would have it, I learned that someone I care about is ill, very ill. Further complicated by a parting of ways between us. I couldn’t even remember the incident, or exactly what happened, I knew I was upset, but the “final” visit, I have no memory of. When I learned of this, haphazardly, I felt like I was going to toss my cookies. It doesn’t sound good, not at all.
I had also been inadvertently told that she had just learned of this last night, and was home from hospital today. All I could think of is being left alone to think about what she was told. I had a full list of things to do today, rose early to do them. The list was set aside two hours upon rising after learning this news.
When you learn something like this, it really doesn’t matter what happened. I think it’s important for each person to acknowledge and say what they couldn’t say prior. And that was the case when I walked into her home, her bedroom where she was resting. I didn’t know how or what I’d find, I just said a prayer for strength and courage and went and sat with her on the bed. It’s a HUGE bed that she hates. I wasn’t sure if she was happy to see me or not, but I grabbed her very soft hand and said “I’m sorry”. She looked away. “I have something to tell you”, I nodded. What she shared next was one of the “moments” I hadn’t recalled, and a bit of it came back. She expressed how hurt she was, and how she didn’t even want to address it or try to fix it with me. “Friends don’t do that to other friends”. I said “Your right, they shouldn’t”.
It wasn’t easy hearing how I had hurt her. And sadly I don’t recall the incident she spoke of, I had thought our estrangement was just a mutual thing after a couple bad experiences. I said the words that I needed to say, “I’m sorry I hurt you”.
I helped adjust her pillows, asked if there was anything I could do for her. Asked if she wanted me to leave, “no, I don’t want you to leave”. Then she shared another incident that hurt her and I guess the look on my face said what I didn’t need to verbalize. It was nothing I had done, nothing I could do. She said I’m sorry, I thought you had.
My mom showed up a few minutes later, I guess she knew where to find me. I had dropped her off to get her car that was being serviced, the second $400 we put into it this month, and just drove away. I didn’t know if I should go see her. I wanted to. But I didn’t want to upset her. I just didn’t want her sitting alone with this news. What happened between us didn’t matter, was unimportant.
She was very tired, and apologetically needed to give in to sleep. We said our goodbyes. I held her hand before I left and told her I would be in touch, and that she could call me if she wanted or needed something. She thanked us for coming and said “Donna, I’m really glad you came”. As I walked out, drove home, I felt numb. But numbness isn’t really the word for it, if it hurts, its not numb, right?
This is a person who I had spent many hours with, driving around back roads, in my home, or hers. She’s almost 20 years older than me, I’ve always tended to have older friends. We have shared with each other things we’ve never shared with another. We were good, close friends. I was frustrated with her about a few things that need not be shared. I was even angry at one point. It wasn’t until she had brought up what she needed to say that I vaguely remembered it.
I thought about the couple things that I had remembered, that annoyed me. And I questioned, was she sick then? Is that why she forgot to do what she promised to do? And at that very moment I was reminded AGAIN, how important it is that we be kind to others. We know not what will eventually unveil itself. It never occurred to me that she was sick when this broken promise happened. I felt like shit, for a few minutes. I allowed myself to feel bad about that, but then I had to forgive myself. I didn’t know. And it wasn’t that I was unkind to her, although her words said it was a look I gave her.
We think we have all the time in the world to make amends, forgive, or fix things. We don’t. This was a blatant reminder for me of the things I take for granted. And I’m a pretty grateful person. But I guess I had more to learn.
So, I decided I needed to go to bed, and I opened my bedroom windows. We are being plummeted with rain. Rumors are there was a tornado 40 miles from us. I laid in bed, realizing, I needed to write about this. It’s all consuming. And now I’ll go crawl back into bed and listen to the rain fall, and think of what perfect weather it is for this day. It should be a dismal, damp, wet night both inside and outside of my home. Because today was a hard day, and I’m very saddened by what I have learned.
That’s all I need to say. The rest I will wrestle with myself. If there’s someone you care about and are at odds with, rethink it. Is it really that important? Do you have both sides? Is the silence worth the loss of time? Only you can answer that.
Grateful I went to see her. If you want to say a prayer for her, I’m sure she would appreciate it. Goodnight.