Saturday, July 18, 2009

When a Friend is Sad

I have a friend that came to me through Hubby. In many ways she is like a twin to me. Our likes and dislikes, the very near overlapping of our birthdays, our careers, our love of theatre and old things, our love for quiet artistic men (like my Hubby and hers), and our enjoyment of an occasional fruit juice and vodka concoction. Because of schedules and well, just life, we see each other rarely - a few times a year, maybe a little more. When we are together we laugh a lot. Because she is funny and quirky and sweet and smart and all those things that make a great friend. But my friend often suffers. My friend is often sad.

She has burdens that are both physical and emotional. She has scars. She has pain. She has troubles. She never lets it overcome her - at least not in my presence - but she suffers and we see it. And I struggle, because I like to solve problems and she has problems I cannot solve.

Last night we talked. We talked medicine and theory. We talked stress and economy. We talked of work and life. We talked of weather and food. We talked of houses and gardens and chores. We talked of travel and music. We talked about baby showers and bridal showers and family.

Her voice spoke lightly, but I heard the strain.

Tonight we are going, with our sweet artistic hubbies, to see a local photographer's slide show under the stars. We'll talk and laugh and enjoy the art together. We'll grab a bite and a drink at a nearby tavern afterwards. We'll part at the end and see each other again in a few weeks, or more likely months. And I won't really have been able to help her. And she won't really burden me with her troubles. But I'll feel her pain.

We'll part as always with a long, lingering embrace. And all I can hope is she'll feel my support.


Lee Beth said...

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KiKi said...

This post resonated with me... both well-written and intuitive, as usual. You are such a good friend. The fact that she knows that you love her and support her and are there for her probably means more than any talking could do right now. Some people are not talkers, some are reluctant to burden others, and some don't know how to start/where to even begin. But if/when she is ever ready to ease her burdens, I'm sure she knows exactly who she can count on. Ditto for me. ;)

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Not being able to help is difficult--I'm sure your presence makes a difference though.

Mean Mama said...

I came by your blog via Jo's blog. I liked your comments on food. I have some very close friends who I have known for many years, and many acquaintances who come and go through my life. I think friends like the one you are speaking of are the people who are like to family. We choose them. I find with my family friends that it is very difficult to separate myself from their pain, and like you, no matter how much I try not to let it affect me it does. I think a lot of people would say that is bad, but I don't think so. I think that if it did not affect you then you would not be a support for her.