When you believe that the best thing to do when life is throwing lemons at you is make lemonade, it’s amazing how thirsty people show up in your life.
Yesterday was a tough day, and nothing about what made it tough has improved. But some amazing things have happened that I might not have noticed if I weren’t having such a tough day, and that is too freakin’ cool.
A really good friend had surgery yesterday, and when I asked if she was up for some visitors, I got a resounding YES! So, after dinner, Second Son, Prima Donna Daughter and I headed to the hospital. Her daughter, who is Oldest Son’s age, was there…about-to-pop-pregnant, due in three weeks, along with the boyfriend-daddy-to-be.
My antennae immediately went on red alert. It took all of 3 sentences out of the boyfriend’s mouth and one glance at the look on my friend’s face (and that of her husband) for me to figure out that my friend is having the same struggle with her impending grandmotherhood as I am, for many of the same reasons. With just one shared look, our hearts ached together…for ourselves, for our kids, for our unborn grandkids and for each other.
I promised I would go back for a kidless visit this morning after dropping PDD off at school. On the way to the hospital I called another friend who’d sent me an email SOS that I saw last night when I got home. She was wrestling with some decisions she had made and just needed someone to reflect back to her the wonderful person she is and I was glad to do it. There’s nothing better than being able to articulate what you see in someone in a way that both calms them and shows them the strength they already have…to lend someone your belief in them when they’ve misplaced their own.
And in that moment, I knew the only productive thing I can do for Oldest Son is exactly that, to the best of my ability…to let him know that I believe in him, his ability to create a life that makes him happy, and that he has the strength to get from here to there, no matter how long it takes him to want to start. I don’t have to like him to do that for him – all of that can come from the love I have for him. I don’t need to tell him again how much I don’t like the choices he’s making now – he knows. He doesn’t even need to hear how much I don’t like who he is these days – he knows that, too. But what he might be forgetting through it all is that I love him, that I see something in him he’s lost sight of.
I went in and visited my friend again. We talked about our two oldest and their lives and felt a little better knowing we weren’t alone, that we weren’t crazy and that we had someone else to rely on/confide in to whom we did not have to censor what we said or explain why we feel the way we do. Priceless.
So, as it turns out, a little of my time, in person and on the phone, gave some lemonade to two thirsty friends and made a big difference for me.