Posts Tagged ‘support’

Who’s Going to Be There For You?

Posted in Caregiving, Chaplaincy and Pastoral Care, Illness on May 11th, 2009 by Jim Hughes – Comments Off

It was just strange.  Today’s visits at the hospital had a theme — the support of family and friends is precious.

As I went from patient to patient, the theme just jumped out.

It started with a patient getting ready for a stem cell transplant talking about how important his support network of friends and family are.  When we got ready to pray, he asked me to pray specifically for them, because they were going to be doubly important to him in the coming weeks.

I visited with a woman struggling with cancer whose daughter and son-in-law had come in from out of town to be with her.  The woman was struggling with news of her condition, as was her daughter.  But they were together.

In another room, I visited with with a couple who had only been in the country a few months.  He was dying, and they had no family or friends in the country to provide support, only a fellow employee.  I was thankful for this man providing support to this couple during an incredibly difficult time.

Then as I was getting a glass of tea in the cafeteria, I ran into a couple I had visited with many times in the past.  He helped her with her food as we sat and visited.  And we talked about how important having each other is.

What I observed today is no surprise to anyone who has been through a tough time.  Family and friends play a valuable, supportive role.  And when they’re not available, or don’t exisit, things are just more difficult.

With this background, maybe there are a couple of points to think about:

1.  If you are currently estranged from family and/or friends, now is the time to heal those relationships.  There will come a time when they need you or you need them.

2.  Don’t wait to let your family and friends know what’s going on when you enter a difficult season.  Let them into your situation, and help them understand how they can provide the support you need.

3.  Don’t be afraid to reach out to provide support to those who may be without family and friends.

So, who’s going to be there for you?  And who are you going to be there for?  Two very important questions to consider as we experience life together.