Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Personal Growth

It sucks to be the one who is always there for people; the one who always seems to handle things so well: with "grace". That's what my friends have told me, but I don't feel so full of grace as I sit here with tears slipping down my cheeks. I don't feel very graceful at all.

I'm really not one to ask for help. Ever. It's not something to be proud of. I really should do it more often. I know this. It's just that when I feel the need, it seems like no one is there.

Someone I thought was such a great friend, well, she pretty much blew me off during the entire month of May, when both my parents died. I could have understood that; could have rationalized some excuse for her - I'm good at that, but then she blew me off all of June, too. Not a visit, not a note, not a call. Until just before we left on our trip, July 21, when she called to say hi. As though nothing had happened.  As though it was all like before.

I'm really easy-going with friends. I cut them a lot of slack, I really do. I'm thick skinned; it takes a lot to hurt my feelings. This hurt. It hurt a lot because we go back a ways. Back before we had kids and through five pregnancies between us. Through shared maternity clothes, post-partum depression, nanny troubles, job changes and the inevitable pull between work and babies that working women feel. We've always connected, she and I, that's why it hurt so much.

I know she will never read this. I asked her to; told her it would mean a lot to me. She said she "doesn't have time for blogs." I pretended that was okay. She is a busy professional woman, after all.

I needed someone to talk to today. It was the first hard day in a long time, but it was really hard. You see, my Mom and Dad, they always ate up whatever my girls were doing and we are in the back to school countdown. We shopped for supplies today. B has 7th (!) grade orientation tomorrow and A has her first band practice EVER (flute, thanks for asking) and they would have been so excited.

Mom always took special joy in picking out back to school outfits for my girls and sending them to them before school started. She had a knack for picking just the right thing. The girls always loved those outfits and I have the photos to prove it.

Mom and Dad would have wanted to hear every detail of our three week camping trip out west and they would have wanted to see every picture and they would have listened to every story and they are not here and it hurts and I miss them.

Left brain says, "They were old, disease caught up with them and this is life."

Right brain says, "They are out there, somewhere, watching and knowing."

Heart says, "I miss them."

I am looking at a calendar of holidays and celebrations coming up and realizing that they will not be there to celebrate with us. And there is a void. Already.

I really didn't expect to feel this way. I thought I had worked through it; I thought I had it handled. I guess I didn't.

Another %$#-damned opportunity for personal growth. And I shall try to treat it as such.


  1. I have no eloquent words to tell you how your words moved me. Beautiful.

  2. Beautifully written piece, Meg, and sorry to hear about your non-friend. Grief can sneak up on you at the strangest times, even years later.

  3. Oh ((Meg)). Sending you so much love and compassion right now. Listen to your right brain as much as possible. I believe your parents were there with you on your recent adventure, basking in your joy.

    As for your friend, know that for whatever reason, she isn't able to cope with your loss. Who knows why? It isn't personal, and she may truly dearly love you. I know it hurts though when people you expect to come through for you don't.

    When that kind of thing happens to me I lick my wounds and then try and feel grateful for the information. Friend not to expect support from, check. Good to know.

  4. I am mortified to click over here and see that I read this post earlier but didn't leave a comment (I know comments mean something!); fingers crossed that I left one on FB.

    Anyhow, I'm really sorry for all that you've been wading through emotionally. I suppose, if there's an upside, is to note that you're allowing yourself to feel what you're feeling--not tamping it down in some way that will later prove unhealthy. I want to think your friend has no idea how much she's hurt you because her head is far removed from the place where you are. Then again, aren't friends supposed to get their heads to where you are?

    At the risk of Pollyannaizing here, if there's an upside to how profoundly you're missing your parents, and trust me, I respect the depth of your grief, let it be that they knew how to be so very present and involved in your kids' lives. They were Show Up Grandparents, and that's a significant legacy.

    Sorry not to have called you when we whizzed through the Cleveland area the other day (we stayed in Novelty); it was tight and intense. One day, though...