Thursday, April 7, 2011

Reasons

Sometimes it's hard to find the reasons in the things that happen to us.  Sometimes it seems as though there is no possible explanation for why we have to endure what we do. 

Sometimes those reasons come into clear focus only through time.  Looking back, a new clarity.

Never seems to happen when you are in it though.  You never get to know why at the time.

The last month of Dad's life, I relied on someone.

Someone who went through what I had been through.

Who knew what it was like. 

Who understood the crippling fear that comes with administering morphine for the first time.

Who knew that it's entirely possible to function when your sleep only comes in guarded two hour increments.

Who felt what I was feeling, who saw what I saw. 

I came to rely on this person far more than I should have.  We communicated all hours of the day and night through text messages, sent a thousand miles away.  I looked to her for reassurance that I was doing the right thing.  Asked for alternatives when what was working failed. 

I asked for advice on how to handle situations.   How would I know when the time was drawing nearer? 

She'd been there before.  Professionally many times, personally once. 

I know that many of the things I asked of her weren't fair.  They weren't right.  But they were questions I needed real answers to, from someone that I knew wasn't going to sugarcoat anything or lie to me. 

Answers, she gave.  And more.

So much more. 

Her wisdom and experience helped me in so many ways that I will never be fully able to thank her for.  She has no idea how much she helped.

I know I can't repay her for her friendship, her kindness, her honesty, her strength.

I know.

Instead, I realize why she helped me now.  I know that there was a reason.  And I know what I must do.

I will do what she did for me.

For others.

I will be that support system, I will answer those questions, I will offer that reassurance. 

I will be the person on the other end of the phone in the middle of the night. 

I will tell people that they are strong enough to get through this. 

Already, in the time since we lost Dad, I've been called to do that twice.

Paying it forward.

There was a reason. 

Thank you, Mandy.

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