Retreating

by adustyframe ~ April 2nd, 2016

I lost a friend this week. Her death was not unexpected but  I desperately hoped that her story would end differently.

So, I’ve been very sad. Not sad for her final destination and not sad for the end of her suffering. Just sad for her loved ones and yes sad for me. She was a special lady.

I was thinking of all the times I should have gone to see her or been in touch with her better.

One time in particular, that I was thinking of was a time she came to my shop (which I don’t have anymore thankfully!). My employee called me and told me my friend was there.

James and I hurried over. She and her husband were showing off their new baby.

They wanted us to eat with them but I made an excuse. It was a little awkward. I could tell she was wondering where Lee was. I cut the visit short because I was too embarrassed to let her know why Lee couldn’t come to eat with us. I didn’t want to give her a chance to ask.

It wasn’t that I thought she would be unkind to me. I just didn’t want to deal with it.

I did this to more than one friend. Another came to town and wanted us to go to a theme park with her family but I made an excuse for the same reason.

I don’t know if I should have done things differently and obviously I cannot change them, but I realize now more than I did at the time that I retreated a lot.

I withdrew into our home and my inner circle where I was safe. Possibly that was the best thing I could have done and many times it was all I energy to do.

But I wonder if I hurt my friends or left them bewildered at my excuses. I want to be clear that they did not do anything wrong. I don’t think they should have done anything differently. I am not implying or questioning their level of friendship! Not at all. Both of these were friends who lived at a distance from me so keeping my information to myself was easy to do.

I think the rambling point of this post  is to share that if you have a friend who appears to be retreating and withdrawing, it’s ok to ask them how they are. It’s good to see what’s up. It’s wonderful to check on them. But also realize that maybe withdrawing may be the only thing they have enough energy to do and that’s ok too.

Now that my friend is gone do I wish I’d have gone out to eat with her and taken a chance that I may be uncomfortable? Yes, I do.

Lizzie

2 Thoughts Shared to Retreating

  1. Barbara H.

    I imagine it was hard to know how much to let people in and how much to retreat. I imagine some of those friends might have been a great support and comfort to you. It’s hard to know, too, when someone seems to be retreating how much to respect their wishes and how much to gently push the door open a bit. We all need such wisdom from God day to day.

  2. Pam

    Thank you

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