A very close friend of mine has just lost her 18 year old son to a tragic car accident. I received a text saying “Luke car accident airlifted to hospital pray”. Upon receiving that text, my mind kicked into gear as my body froze. I wanted to text back and get details: what happened, where did it happen, who was with him, exactly how bad is it.
We live in a small town in a very closely knit homeschool community. I know this boy. I know most of his seven siblings. I directed his graduation ceremony just last spring. His mother is one of my daughter’s teachers. His sister one of my daughter’s dear friends. Facebook was abuzz with pleas for prayer. I wanted to be at the hospital with my friend. I wanted to be able to comfort her and bring her anything she and her family needed. This was impossible.
A dear friend from out of town had just arrived to visit for the weekend. This friend came amidst a very serious situation in her marriage. I don’t think I’d be offending her if I said she was a mess. She admitted it a time or two herself during her stay. My guest had some very demanding needs of her own.
I was in shock–and still am in shock–during her whole visit. Because our friends are dearly loved here, I was sure they were being well looked after; so I settled in for a weekend catching up with my out of town friend.
She and I feared that she was nearing a nervous breakdown. She certainly acted like it. I was very stretched to be as loving toward her as I would my grieving friend. She was fruitlessly doing everything in her power to control her situation. She was acting like a crazy person. My husband stated that he thought she sounded like she had lost her mind.
I’m not going to lie. I wanted to shake her many times during her stay, and shout, “My friend just lost her CHILD!” Many times. So many times it makes me ashamed. On the last day of her stay, she spoke with her husband and decided to return h0me. She came downstairs and told me with a smile on her face that she was going to go on a trip with her husband, so she needed to leave a day early because their flight was on Monday. Just like that she was gone.
Now that she’s gone, I can’t help but worry about her. Did she really reconcile with her husband or did she sense the impending shaking?
As the dust has settled, I’ve come to realize that when faced with trauma, adversity, or whatever you’d like to call it, we (not just women, but maybe mostly women) feel tremendous pressure to DO. Do something.
In addition to doing something for my grieving friend, what I wanted to do was to speak to my own son who is in Japan at the moment. I wanted to hear his voice. He’s too cheap to buy a phone with an international calling plan, so we’re relegated to communication over Facebook. I wanted to gather my loved ones near and not let them out of my sight for awhile–or ever. I wanted to run around like my other friend and do, do, do stuff even if it didn’t make any sense or make anything better. Instead, I did as I advised my friend to do:
Be still, and know that I am God…Psalm 46:10
I am so thankful today that I know Him, and that I know He cares for me.