Sunday, March 10, 2013
KEEPING IN TOUCH!!
My Aunt Gert died last week. She was 100 years old this past August. There was a wonderful party given to celebrate. Two weeks later I called and asked how she enjoyed the party and she said "What party?"...
I didn't really get in too many calls to her this past Fall. Then last week I was told she was in Hospice...I was beside myself and packed right away to get up to see her before she could possibly go. As we were going out the door I got the call that she had passed...I was devastated. Not that I didn't totally expect that at 100 it wouldn't be too long, and not that we weren't all able to go on without her, but I was devastated because I hadn't gotten to simply 'talk' to her once more before she went. How many of us suffer that feeling of "why didn't I call more or visit more?" when someone passes or becomes ill. I hope that I will not ever feel that way again.
I only recently learned that my Assistant talks to her family (and I mean cousins, aunts and uncles, as well as brothers and sisters and parents) every single day!! She gets up early and goes to bed late so she can be sure and touch base with everyone each day. In addition, I have a 'best friend' from high school who has lived in California since we graduated. I couldn't believe how much she called me (at least once daily) when I had breast cancer, and equally as much when I suffered a heart attack. And the distance has never kept us from being in touch with one another. What really blew my mind was when she too, told me that she does the same with her entire family. Her sister has passed, but her sister's children and their children are called everyday, and she too talks to all her cousins, etc. all the time.
I'm really interested if all my readers do virtually the same, or like my family, barely stay in touch.
Neither of the two people I've described use the internet to 'keep in touch' since it's all done by calling. Well, in today's world that's got to be rare. Other than my daughter, and her three girls, all other communication is mainly by email or text. Even my son asks that I email him rather than call. That way he is actually able to give me more attention then when I call in the midst of his busy working day/night.
Calls are wonderful, but a simple email or even a text to make sure everything is ok, is at least one way of 'keeping in touch'. And when I say 'family', I include all good friends. How many times have we heard of some mishap or infirmity that has befallen someone about whom we care and felt just awful that we hadn't been 'in touch' prior to all this happening.
Others are our life blood. We thrive on their warmth, friendship, intellligence and creativity. They are what makes the difference often in our own successes and failures. They are our support. But it does take a commitment to make sure we 'keep in touch' and are there for them when they need us to be their conscience, support and simply their 'friend'. In my practice I have always found that whatever anyone is suffering is made so much easier when their life is filled with people, as opposed to how much harder it all is when they feel friendless and lonely. It actually makes a tremendous difference in one's physical well being as well as his or her emotional well being.
And, not to excuse myself, but a twosome can accomplish all this much better than a single person. If you haven't contacted someone in awhile you can always ask a spouse or a partner to take care of it. And it is so much easier for others when they have the choice of contacting you or your 'other half'. As bad as I feel about my inadequacies regarding my family (I guess I simply took them 'for granted'), I did make a commitment early on to stay in touch with people I have met and cared for through the years, especially since I became widowed. I am not one who ever feels alone or short of friends...but it does take work and a real commitment. In the end this activity makes your life and your whole world that much fuller and more complete.
Isn't there some ad that says something like "Have you called your kids today?". Take heed.
I hope you've found this session helpful....
Mimi Scott, Ph.D
917 846-2449 Isn't it great how many ways we can contact someone today!!