When a friend loses a loved one, when a family member is diagnosed with cancer, it’s natural to feel a desire to help. But sometimes we simply do not know what to say. So we say what comes naturally…
“Call me if you need anything.”
We heard this multiple times over the last few weeks. Family and friends, searching to express their heart-felt condolences when Dad passed away, offered hugs and handshakes, shared stories and memories, and some offered the natural occurring words… “Call me if you need anything.”
I have no doubt the predictable phrase was offered with complete heartfelt intentions. I know, because I’ve offered such condolence many times myself. Each time, I feel, my intentions were heartfelt.
For those who offered such words of comfort, please know we felt the genuine goodness behind your words. We know with sincerity we really can call if needed.
I’m grateful for those who found ways of expressing their sympathy that touched my heart. Several asked specifically what they could do. Others inquired if they could bring a meal or help with errands. A few said, “I’m here if you need to talk.”
Then there were those who did something, mostly something simple like writing a note, dropping off a meal, a little act of service, gifts of flowers or money. One friend offered extra help at work. Another offered to make the five hour drive to help clean out Dad’s house, and bring a few friends with him. Each act, small and large, was greatly appreciated.
I recognized the depth of feeling being expressed when a warm embrace is followed by, “I understand how you feel.” These moments are perhaps the most poignant expression of condolence of empathy from one who has previously taken the journey I’m now walking.
For those who shared, in any fashion, I hope my words in some small measure convey the depth of gratitude my family and I feel. If you need to talk, I’m only just a phone call away.
Have a great Monday. Thanks for letting me share.
p.s. Take 15 minutes today to reach out and share a thought of encouragement.