Sunday, August 10, 2014

I hate saying Goodbye

It's been a very stressful weekend for me. I really hate saying "goodbye" to the people I love.

The first "goodbye" was not a goodbye in the regular sense. A good friend, one of my church ladies that I had gotten close to, has Alzheimer's and is now in an assisted living facility. I'm lucky enough to be included on her visitor list (which is very limited, since she is easily agitated and gets very upset -- apparently a common reaction when you know you should recognize people and places but can't). When I first arrived, she didn't know who I was. But I was able to gently remind her of some of our fun times together, and we ended up having a great time together.

And it really was a great time together. We chatted about the things she remembered. We giggled over things we had done in the past. We made plans for future visits. And if some of the things that she remembered weren't quite right, if she mixed up people, or if there were moments that confused her -- we were able to find a way to accept it and laugh together about it.

It wasn't until I got home, after telling her goodbye and promising to come visit her again soon, that I cried. Because even though my friend is still there, and we can still laugh and have fun together, I can see that she is quickly leaving us (both mentally and physically) and the day is coming when "goodbye" really is "goodbye."

While I was still trying to accept my friend's condition, I received a message from an old friend and ex-sister-in-law. Sharon was letting me know that our very good friend had unexpectedly passed away on Saturday.

I still don't know what to say about this. It's been a while since I've talked with Pats, and even longer since I've seen her. But we had a friendship that time and distance didn't affect. I always knew she was there, and either one of us could pick up the phone and we'd start in the middle of the conversation just as if we had talked every day. I'm feeling very lost knowing that I don't have that safety net anymore.

Pats was my college roommate. She was the maid of honor when I got married. She was godmother to my firstborn. She was there when my marriage fell apart, helping to put me back together when I thought the world was ending. She was there to kick my butt when I was being an idiot, and to give me high-fives when I was celebrating. She was my best friend, even if time and distance kept us apart.

I hate having to say "goodbye."

1 comment:

Sandi said...

I just found out today that I have another goodbye to say. One of our church ladies, an active member who has a huge heart and a twinkle in her eye, is now in hospice with her time counting out in hours.

Thankfully, another friend confided that her wedding date has been set so there was also some joy in the day.