This is written in response to something I read on She Loves Magazine, an online magazine. While it wasn’t a formal prompt, it did inspire this post. If you haven’t read She Loves, they’ve got a lot of good articles, especially about faith and womanhood. Click here to visit their site.
They showed up.
In spite of busy schedules, birthdays, work commitments, sports, distance, sickness, gas money, church, homework, and
they. showed. up.
They came with soft hearts, quiet voices. They came with hugs, meals, gift cards, treats, and kind words.
I would have rather see them because of a party. I’d have preferred a happy occasion, a baby shower or girl’s night out. This was a different kind of life event, something that comes to us all eventually, but something that had come rapidly to my family and left us reeling and disoriented. And still they showed up.
They each made sacrifices. One took time away from her son’s birthday. Three drove more than an hour to be there. They bought gifts and supplies. They made phone calls and sent messages, each one opening herself up to the possibility of being ignored, saying the wrong thing, confronting her own loss, her own fears. Three showed up even though we probably hadn’t seen each other in 10 years. They brought tokens of hope, greeting cards expressing sympathy, flowers to brighten the dark place we found ourselves, hugs and shared tears to shore me up when my heart and body felt numb from trying to stand.
They made meals and delivered them to my house, things for immediately and freezable things I could save for later. When you’re the one responsible to make food for the family each night, but you can hardly muster the energy to pull on your pants, meals are a profoundly touching gift.
Some of them had been direct links of support during my dad’s sickness, some had not. Either way, whether they had known my dad personally or not, they showed up in those weeks, on that day, as an act of love, as an act that acknowledged the friendship we shared and it’s value. So while it’s not a party, per se, it has been a celebration of friendship. And to all my dear friends, near and far, who have been such a buoy to me in this hard time, thank you. In my stupor I probably haven’t said it enough. Thank you.