I learned today about the death of the sister of someone I know – someone who was a very dear friend. I have never known two sisters who were closer. At one point, I used to be an honorary sister, too.
But those relationships grew distant as I disappeared into a black hole after Jason died. I was in so much pain after the death of our precious son. I was so hurt at being left so alone that I pushed a lot of people away…scared them away with my deep grief. I tried to reach out to people as best I knew how, but there was so little response…sometimes I felt like my hand was slapped for reaching out. I felt like they had failed me when I needed them most, had left me – and our immediate family – so alone in our huge grief when we had NO extended family close by…and I didn’t know how to handle it. I hurt on so many levels. I pushed them away. I held them at arm’s distance. I couldn’t stand the pain on top of pain – the secondary wounds on top of the huge gaping wound of Jason’s death – so I disappeared behind my wall to protect my wounded heart. In the process, I have lost many relationships…maybe I would have lost them anyway. I don’t know. Not many people can stick it out for the long haul.
So many years have passed…and those relationships have grown so distant. I don’t know if they can ever be resurrected.
My instinct is to rush to my friend’s side and comfort her. She has remained in my heart in a special way, but I don’t think she knows that. If you push people away in times of grief , pretty soon they don’t know what else to do but stay away. And they move on. The relationship changes, sometimes beyond repair.
We live on the other side of the country now, but I allowed walls to be built – I built walls – between us when I was in so much pain myself that I don’t think she would welcome my offerings at all. I wish things were different. I would like to be there for her now…I would like her to know how much I care.