Several years ago, one morning in church, our pastor asked us to pray for a dear lady we all knew. Her husband had been scheduled for an overnight stay at the hospital for a simple procedure. Our pastor made a point of asking for prayers for her. You see, she and her husband had been married over 52 years and she had never once slept a night without him.
Being a well seasoned Army wife, this concept was new to me. Army guys are not known for being home seven days a week, 30 days a month…you get it. I most certainly didn’t enjoy it, you somehow figure it out and muddle through it.
By far a big lesson for me in the art of empathy. I wanted to show I cared and had sincere understanding for this gal. Who, by the way, had so many visitors and calls that very one day and evening, she laughingly told us later she was exhausted and fell into bed and slept very well.
Of course, we lifted our prayers, chatted with her and all was well.
However, I really wanted to learn and understand empathy. Not feel sorry for her. I wanted to figure out how I could lend an ear or a gentle pat on the shoulder. Maybe a simple phone call would help?
Last night a friend sent me a note. Being married around the 16-year mark, her husband was going out-of-town for business, for the first time, EVER. With two teenagers and several planned activities over the course of the upcoming weekend, I am sure she will do fairly well. We promised to send messages, call & check on her and the kiddos. We invited them to our home and for dinner.
I got the call! This time I was ready. I had empathy to share. With two teenagers and several planned activities over the course of the upcoming weekend, I am sure she will do fairly well. We promised to send messages, call & check on her and the kiddos. We invited them to our home and for dinner.
Mr. Right retired from the Army 17 years ago. His current job takes him away on business now and then. It is yucky and I don’t like it one bit. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not dreadful. I don’t sit and pine for him. Do people pine? Do people even use that word anymore? I do stay busy and over plan. I plan trips to craft, gardening, gift, quilt shops and spend oodles of time looking at everything. I eat food that I really like. I just miss him something awful. I always feel at loose ends when he is gone. I know how nice it is when girlfriends and family check in on you. I always appreciate those folks in my life that call me and make sure I am distracted for a bit.
So to my friend who will experience something different, awkward, feels odd sleeping alone…….
We are all in your corner. We are all sending oodles of good karma your way.
May the weekend slip by uneventful and by Monday morning you will be exhausted from all the worry, fretting and the restless couple of nights you had. Not to mention you two crazy kids texting, phoning & talking to each other way more than had he been in the same town!
In a rather lovely way, I’m secretly glad it is bothering you. I am happy for you that your marriage is so strong and steady that having the love of your life not beside you is going to be tricky and feel funny. The love affair you are having with that man of yours is beautiful to behold. You two have built something so strong, it will most certainly withstand a two-day business trip.
In this together, friend.
It is going to be okay.