It is the start of my vacation with my family and a series of travels that I'm not sure I am ready for. We head off to a cottage to enjoy life by the water. The sun, the beach, swimming and friends. This I wholeheartedly look forward to! I will be home for several hours and head to the other side of the country to visit a friend. This I am not sure I am ready for.
The main purpose of my visit is to be with an old friend who has a dying parent. My purpose is to simply be there for her. I know that plans can be what they are but not to focus on that. I plan to cook some food for her as food is one way I know how to comfort people. I plan to hold her when she cries, as I am sure she will. I plan to sit with her mom who was so kind to me many years ago when I felt I had no one. I plan to be with her mom so that my friend can go out and have a good cup of coffee, alone. I also plan to be with my friend and laugh and maybe go for a walk. I plan to cry myself as I am sure I will be lost for words. I plan to be speechless as I'm not sure what to say to someone who is about to lose their parent. I plan to hug my friend as old friends to, with no expectations. I plan to have no real plans.
I want to be there for her. I hope I am ready? It was just a few months ago that I sat next to my own grandmother and held her hand as she passed away. I'm not sure how close to the other side my friends mother is but this pain is still fresh for me. My biggest hope is that I will be strong enough for my friend to help her through this difficult time. AFter all is this not what friends do? We are there for each other no matter what. How can I tell her that I understand, when really I have no idea what it is like to lose a parent? I fear for her when I leave, who else will be there for her? I will be there to offer a break and comfort but then who will she have when I am gone? Will the few short days be enough to give her strength? She is such a strong woman already, this I know. But at a time like this we need all that we can get and I know she is exhausted. I want to tell her that it will get easier but I know the months after will be hard. I wish we could live in the same city and not different sides of the country as I am sure she will need me more after. I hope she will come home to me and my home a soft place for her to land. A place where she can sleep, eat and not think about anything...
I will try to be present for her. Be there for her and give her whatever she needs. I hope all I give will be just what she needs and that I can give enough. I can't wait to see her and am thrilled that I can do this for her. 10 more sleeps, ready or not here I go!
Jennifer is an RMT, long time yoga practitioner and teacher. Follow her musings as an RMT, yoga teacher, prenatal educator and mother of three.