Thanks for your support in recent weeks. It reminds me: it’s so important to reach out to others in times of stress, illness or other need. I offer these tips (please add your own):
- Call. And call again. It matters to your friend, even if they can’t come to the phone. Some friends called even when I couldn’t think or speak clearly. They ended up talking with my husband. We both appreciated their effort.
- Send a card. In these days of quick email, a personal card is a valued touch. Personalize it with your own caring or inspirational words. A few friends reassured me: “This is just a temporary setback, Cynthia. You WILL recover!”
- Use email. Some friends sent me uplifting e-cards and jokes. Some sent me photos of their garden. And friend Carl visited and took photos of our garden, since I couldn’t go to see it myself. Then he sent me a picture of one flower every week. Those jokes, e-cards and photos cheered me.
- If possible, bring soup! Family friend Eva showed up with soup and magazines. I had a concussion and couldn’t read at first. I also had no appetite. But that soup kept me going in the early days after my fall. Later, friends John and Anne travelled a long way to bring us a delicious meal and spend time with my husband and me.
- Ask “How may I help?” My friend Gail, a great cook, kept asking. One day, I realized that I wanted Jamaican food. So Gail cooked oxtail and broad beans (with rice ‘n’ peas) and both couples had a great evening together.
- Pray. Let your friend know you’re sending good vibes and/or praying for him/her and their loved ones. I could see that my family was deeply distressed in the first three weeks after my fall. Knowing friends at church and elsewhere were praying for them was a comfort.
And yes, my friends who wrote via my blog and Facebook: I read your caring wishes as soon as I could. Those wishes warmed my family’s hearts, as well as mine. Thank you.
Photo below by Hamlin Grange