Saturday, January 15, 2011

January 15, 2011


We all know people who have times of need. There is not a single person on this planet who does not go through difficult, stress-filled times during their lifetime. In the past year, my family has gone through the most difficult challenge since my husband and I were married nearly 18 years ago: my husband's cancer diagnosis.

At first, I thought that the battle we faced would bring both sides of our families closer; however, I was truly wrong. My family wanted to hear nothing about what we were going through. I had a few family members on facebook who would keep in touch from time to time asking how my husband was doing, but they all refused to visit during his chemotherapy and radiation treatments and during his healing process after his surgery. My husband did have a few family members who seemed to care. Two sisters and a brother were at the hospital during his surgery, and a few of his family members visited him during his hospital stay; however, once he went home from the hospital, everyone seemed to forget where we lived, and they even seemed to forget our telephone number.

However, there were a few people who seemed to care: our neighbors. Our one neighbor, an elderly, retired gentlemen, plowed our driveway in the wintertime while my husband was undergoing his first rounds of chemotherapy treatments, so I was at peace of mind in case I had to rush him to the hospital due to any side effects that may have occurred.  Our neighbors who live to the rear of our property helped myself and my son with mowing the lawn during the summer when my husband was taking his last phase of chemotherapy and radiation treatments, and they helped us rake our leaves in the fall since my husband did not have the physical strength to do the task on his own. These people were strangers to us, but they helped us more than any of our family members or friends. Some of our family members and our friends seemed to turn their backs on us and look the other way when we needed them the most.

When someone you know and whom you claim to love is going through a difficult period in his or her lifetime, don't be afraid to step up to the plate and help them. Nine chances out of ten, they are not going to ask you for help. They will tell you that they are fine and that they can deal with everything on their own. I am telling you that they cannot deal with it on their own, because I have lived it. Don't be afraid to show up at your friend's house with a prepared meal, so they don't have to cook for an evening, or give them a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant if they are able to eat out. Do something to ease their minds! If you can afford it, help them with their expenses till they get back on their feet. Don't just sit back and say that they said that they are fine; do something to make their day a little easier. Be there for that person or persons in need, because one day you might need a helping hand!

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