Today is the third anniversary of my father’s Memorial Service. Wow.
Three years later, I can immediately summon who was present – and who was not. Both groupings of people seem equally important to me. Yes, there is no finer moment in life to discern who is TRULY “there” for you than navigating the transitions associated with an elder’s passing – especially that of an Un-cope-able Parent.
As I see it, there are three points of distinction and/or decision-making you will be called upon to make.
Who Stays Strong?
This first category DEFINES friendship. They remain stalwart throughout. These are the people the overwhelmed caregiver – like me – can turn to at the proverbial midnight hour and receive support. I know, because at the height of my despair, I called or emailed them countless times. Though some on this list weren’t in actual attendance on September 22, 2012, they still make the “cut”. For, they’ve demonstrated over and over how squarely they remain in my corner.
A Toronto Star newspaper article of December 26, 2014 (“Offer help to caregivers during the holidays”) acknowledges burdened caregivers may not have time to nurture their friendships. For me, this is a HIGH value system, so I can’t relate. However, I understand some may not participate in social outings. What I do know for sure is that reluctance to connect due to YOUR personal discomfort doesn’t constitute an acceptable reason for withdrawal or avoidance.
Whom Do You Need to Let Go?
In the intervening 36 months since delivering my Dad’s eulogy, my circles have showed up in “interesting” ways all around. There’s a parallel to leaving workplaces, I’ve noticed. Here are four combinations: 1) those you believe will be there and they are; 2) those you believe will be there and they’re not; 3) those you’d never imagine will be there and they are; 4) those you’d never imagine will be there and are not. Category number two is hugely worth noting.
I Can Help You Decide
Even while putting the finishing touches on Coping with Un-cope-able Systems: ADVOCACY for Eldercare, I’ve begun to craft a new series of volumes called Saying Goodbye: Letting Go with DIGNITY & CLASS. One will regard Friendships.
Believe me I learned a ton about friendships in 2012. And, I’ve been doing active clean-ups of those who deserve to be in my Inner Circle since. My criteria of SELECTIVE friendship are firmly in place.
If you’re interested in my coaching to move on from those who no longer serve in your life, I welcome your call at (905) 822-2503 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org