Archive for April 19th, 2011

Finding Strength in a Moment of Weakness

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

I’m not sure why, but I’m pretty convinced that I’ve always had a knack for saying the right things when people ask for advice. Although I don’t always tell them what they want to hear, I try to be as honest as possible.

Yesterday I was left speechless on a few different occasions. When I can’t find anything to say I know that I’m way out of my comfort zone. I’ve always been fairly good at adapting to a situation and creating a positive atmosphere.

When my mother called me at work yesterday morning I didn’t know what to say. I knew that my nephew’s best friend at college had committed suicide the night before. I had briefly talked with my sister to make sure she didn’t need anything from me at that moment in time. My niece had a lacrosse game scheduled for 11:30, so I planned on leaving work early to go see the game. I knew my mom was reeling. She couldn’t be with my sister because she had to be at her appointment with the brain specialist in Schenectady. I could tell that she thought someone should be with my sister. I quickly packed up my stuff at work and called it a day.

When I saw my sister she started talking and I didn’t know what to say. It made me think of that old Reba McEntire song where she sings about being a parent and not knowing what to say in a moment like that. I was there. I was in that spot.

She sniffled a little bit and said, “What do I say to Marissa? I can’t tell her that it’s ok, because it’s not ok.” Although my head was crammed with thoughts my lips didn’t move. I couldn’t speak. Instead, I sat there and listened because that’s all I felt that I could do. In my head I knew that she didn’t need anything more than that.

I watched the first half of the game before returning to work. I was going to take the rest of the day off, but I knew my sister was going to go home and get some rest. When I got back to work the people who I’m close to offered their support. I’ve come to count on these people during tough times. I don’t have to ask them for anything. They offer their support and don’t expect anything in return. They do what true friends do.  I’m very appreciative of the people I have in my life.

I’m usually fairly active during the evening hours. On that night I didn’t do a thing. I crawled into bed at 7pm and stayed there until around 9:30. I kept my mind active. I was in another world, even if it was only for a few hours. It was almost as if I was in a dream. Every once in a while I touched myself just to make sure that I wasn’t dreaming. It was an extremely odd feeling that I don’t think very many people are ever able to experience.

When I got out of bed I went for a drive. The cold, damp air felt good as it entered my lungs when I got outside. The light fog and wet pavement added to everything else that I had experienced throughout the day. It was almost a perfect way to end the day. I was home within a half hour.

My thoughts tonight are with my nephew. I can’t imagine what he’s going through. I’ve had a few traumatic things happen to me, but nothing like this. I would like to give him advice, but I have nothing to offer. I sent him a note to tell him how much I care about him and how much I love him. He has my ear anytime that he feels that he needs or wants it.

Time heals all wounds, but some scars run so deep they never go away. This scar will be deep. There’s absolutely no doubt about the magnitude of this event. I hope that Anthony is able to stay focused. His final exams are closing in fast. His mind will be a mess and he must concentrate in order to do well. If anyone is reading this please say a prayer for him. I will pray that he is able to find a peaceful, quiet mind. I will also pray that he will never forget this event and that he will use it to help others.

Sometimes we don’t realize how strong we are until something happens that requires us to use our strength. This is surely one of those things. Although I know that my nephew is strong this will give him a chance to see his own strength. In what he thinks is his weakest point, he will find the strength to deal with the adversity surrounding him and use it to motivate him to make his life better as well as all of those around him.

Once again we have learned that life has no favorites. He’s going to take every one of us at one time or another. Live each day like it’s your last and don’t hold anything back. Everything around you can change in five minutes. Stay close to the ones you love and love the ones you need and want in your lives.