...that you just can't ask for!
Today's post was inspired by a conversation that I had with a good friend of mine a couple of months ago. I thought about it again yesterday, and it stirred something in me that I needed to write about today.
We were talking about people in my life who had hurt me during the time surrounding my mom and Grady's death. I was sharing why I was upset with certain people, mainly for not acknowledging the death of my mom and/or Grady. No card. No phone call. No simple, "I'm sorry". Even from people who knew my mom (unfortunately no one really got to know Grady but me), and people I was supposed to be "close" to.
***As an aside, let me say that I have made amends with two very important people over this subject. I will not name any names, but they know who they are. I'm so thankful for that resolution, and the peace that has followed. However, there are a few people with whom I'm still very hurt because of the lack of acknowledgement and/or expression of sympathy toward me and my family. It goes as far as flat-out dismissal of our loss, acting as if it never happened (especially Grady). Maybe that's wrong, but I can't deny the feelings that I have.
Back to the conversation with my friend...
As we were talking, she voiced that my hurt was coming from unmet expectations that I had of these people. She suggested that I tell these people what I need(ed) from them. After all, if you don't tell people what you need, how are they supposed to know?
I agree 100%. People can't read our minds, so we must ask for what we need...
Except in the case of sympathy!
You CANNOT ASK for sympathy! You can't say to someone, "Can you please be sorry for me or show me some sympathy that my baby/mom just died?"
It is something that is given out of love and respect for the one who is deceased and/or to those who are grieving. It comes from one's heart.
(***Another aside, there are some who know but have chosen, for whatever reason, to remain silent...that hurts worse!)
I am so very grateful for the out-pouring of love and sympathy that we have received in many different ways. Maybe I should not have expected sympathy from anyone. Maybe my expectations were (and are) too high of people. But it is amazing to me that mere strangers, or those who are acquaintances, can be more empathetic and sympathetic than close family and friends.
If you have not experienced loss and/or death and in your life, you are very blessed!
However, I've learned a very important lesson through the deaths of my mom and Grady that I want to share with you. Even if you're uncomfortable with it, try your best to communicate these words with someone who is hurting...
"I'm sorry for your loss."
It doesn't take much effort, and it's a message that reaches far beyond the words themselves to let hurting people know you care.