11.27.2013

She Offered To Wash My Hair

Before I go off of the grid to spend time with 
and give thanks for my family, I'm sharing one more reflection from the 
Kind Spring 21-Day Gratitude Challenge:


If loss and learning go hand-in-hand, then I ought to be a genius by now. This year has been a challenging one in the loss department to be sure. Being a big fan of the saying, "What doesn't kill us makes us stronger," I also ought to be Sampson strong. But rather than focus on what's lost, let me share what I've found.

In the dark, scary hour that left me with a total-loss vehicle, numerous physical injuries and a broken spirit, my friend Margaret came to the rescue. Her super power is compassion and caring. She lent my husband a vehicle so he could take the kids to the orchestra. She brought over dinner and reading material to keep me comfortable. She checked on me every day and she even offered to wash my hair. That was huge because the collision was on Thursday afternoon and by Sunday, I desperately needed it. I'd lost my mobility, and she offered to wash my hair.

I can't count how many doctor appointments I had, but I never had to worry about transportation because friends with cars came to my rescue. For two months, people had to drive me everywhere I went. To school. To the ortho. To physical therapy. To church. To counseling. To the treating doctor. Back to ortho. I'd lost my freedom, but I had friends. Lots of friends. Friends with the super power of comfort and caring. Sometimes they even delivered food when they'd pick me up. Friends with food. Comfort food. And some friends came by just to visit. I'd lost my freedom, all right, but when I couldn't go to them, they came to me.

By the end of May, the trauma set in pretty badly and I knew I couldn't be an effective counselor at that point, so I took a medical leave. To heal. And rest. And restore. Again friends (and family!) helped out. My sister spent a week with me, as did my Dad and his wife. Their visit was medicinal in ways I can't explain. And many people used their super powers of affirmation and encouragement cheer me and lift my spirits:


Dear Barbara,

I have been a follower of your blog for a long time but have never commented or responded. Your blog is the first site I check each day and I will say I find myself sighing when there is not a new post. I have gotten to know you through your posts and feel like you are my “cyber friend."

I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate all you do for your school and all the “cyber friends” you help each day with your posts. I am thankful for all your wonderful words of wisdom, advice and fantastic lessons!

I hope this summer will be a time of healing both physically and emotionally! 

Thanks again!


I'd lost my joy, but kind notes like this one from a 
sweet counselor out in cyberspace named Christi came to the rescue 
and, bit by bit, they helped me to find myself again.



Early in the summer, two of my very good counseling colleagues and friends lost their battles with illness and went to be with their Heavenly Father. More loss. Accompanied by grief and sadness. But knowing them made me a better counselor. I will forever hear Sally's sweet voice spurring me on with a whisper, "What's the gift in that?" and see Catie standing at the front door with a smile to greet her little ones, a practice I've adopted and carried out in her honor this school year. These two role models, both of whom were mentors to me, had the gift of gratitude, comfortability, life and love. We lost them from their earthly journeys way too soon for my liking, but their legacies are alive and well in my heart and soul.

It's said that things happen in threes, and I'm happy to report that in my case that's true. No other losses to survive this year. Just recovery and restoration. 
And the lesson.

From little on, I was taught that it's better to give than to receive, and for the most part, I believe that to be true. But learning to receive, 
gracefully, 
graciously, 
gratefully,
that's been a gift that'll likely keep on giving indefinitely, a present I first opened on January 13th, when Margaret offered to wash my hair.

Have a Blessed Thanksgiving.





4 comments:

  1. Thank you, Barbara. Allowing us to share in your journey through such personal reflections means a lot. Through your challenges and struggles you inspire others to push forward. I'm grateful!

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  2. You have a beautiful spirit and beautiful way with words. Have a blessed Thanksgiving.
    ❀ Tammy
    Forever in First

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  3. This was a heartfelt post, Barbara...they say that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. I'm so glad that when you were in need, friends appeared who could help!

    I hope you have a blessed Thanksgiving and continue to mend. Your blog is one of my favorites.:)

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  4. This is beautiful. I hope that you and all who read this blog have a very Happy Holiday! Thank you for all you do and I appreciate you.

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I really enjoy hearing from my readers; thanks for sharing your reflections with us!

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