We were just sitting around enjoying the live music at a local restaurant -- a couple of my friends and a couple of women I had never met. One of my friends is suffering from depression and we talked about what a struggle it is. Then she just poured out her story,
You know my dad was in the slammer for 17 years…he killed my mother…put her body in the trunk and the smell caused the neighbors to call the cops….
It was years ago but how she get past that pain? She can't. She simply can't.
The lady I didn't know was doing cross-stitch with her daughter. She began explaining how her husband had committed suicide. But that was not the worst part--he had been missing for two years.
How does she get past that loss?
On the stories went, each woman at the table sharing a little of her experience. I talked of my divorce, the loss of my home and how the husband I had loved so dearly had wanted me dead. I don't know how to come back from that. It has changed me.
Each of these women had been changed. We talked about the importance of talking, sharing, reaching out. We all talked about expressing gratitude each day for the little blessings that aren't really so little--food, our pets, being out with friends.
When I arrived home, I had an email from another close friend: Her daughter, from whom she had been estranged (after the ex told the child horrible stories about her mother) had passed away. My friend had longed for a reconciliation, a moment she could put her arms around her child and tell her she had always loved her.
What could I possibly say to comfort my friend on such a loss?
Such profound losses--at yet each of these women is generous, and loving, and positive. I am blessed.