Re: OT: Fran Update
- From: Kirk Gordon <kg1@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sun, 07 Dec 2008 00:14:59 -0500
To Those Following This "General Hospital" Soap Opera:
I thought Fran was out of the woods, but it seems she's been transported by helicopter back into the middle of the forest.
Fran has my best wishes BB.
Thanks. I'm vacillating between anxiety, helplessness, frustration, and unfocused anger. I need a dog to kick. Just kidding. :)
I have no clue whether this will help; but I'll offer it just in case.
A few years ago, my wife's mother had some scary surgery. My wife, and all of her many siblings, were seriously worried and upset, of course. I wanted desperately to do something, anything, that would help; but there simply wasn't anything to be done. I did the few small things I could think of (like going out for coffee when everybody was camped at the hospital), but I found no way at all to make any difference about fears and emotions. So, without planning or trying, I ended up being pretty much useless. The best I could manage in the way of emotional aid was to keep my own thoughts and feelings to myself, just because my wife didn't need to deal with those in addition to her own worries. I went with her wherever she needed to go. I listened patiently, offering little of my own, to all the conversations and commiserations. I held my tongue when things got out of hand, and when everbody started sharing their own opinions about what might happen, how bad it could get, how some alternative medicine from an Indonesian faith-healer made more sense than what the surgeons were saying, etc. And I sort of worried that I was being cold, unsympathetic, or even distant, at a time when I should have found a way to do much more.
Months later, after things had settled down, talk at a get-together of my wife's family turned to the subject of the surgery, from which mom-in-law had ultimately emerged just fine. My wife surprised me by mentioning how much I'd helped, and how much it had meant to have someone around who wasn't crying, wasn't panicked, and was able to remain reliably calm in the midst of all the madness. It turns out that I was her "rock", and that having something solid nearby had been extremely important and helpful.
You may never know for sure; and Fran may not realize it herself; but sometimes it really is best just to be there, and to let someone know and trust that you always will be there, even if you can't do more than that. We all need someone to lean on, sometimes. Someone solid and unafraid. Someone who, like a doctor, can help us best because he doesn't feel our pain.
My guess is that you're already doing all the right things. But you always wish you could do more. Put that worry aside. Trust yourself. You may already be doing more, and more good, than you can possibly know, precisely BECAUSE you know your limits, and because you're able to remain solid and calm.
- Re: OT: Fran Update
- From: BottleBob
- Re: OT: Fran Update
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