Friday, April 10, 2009

The Only Way to Say Thank You

You know when you want to say thank you to someone so profusely but nothing in the world could show them that the specific way they helped you, while it was completely easy for them and it seemed so small, was the exact thing you needed at that very moment?

That's what I want to say to my Katie J. here (and her wonderful husband, Sam, who provides for her to be abvailable to me).

It doesn't happen often but the other day I found myself in the middle of a horrible Emotional Gus Hurricane and did not know how I got there. I had no warning. It hit and I was stuck. It was the second most painful thing I've been through since the sudden and without-my-permission death of my son, Gus.

The clouds really started forming on Sunday and I guess I should have thought to do a self-examination then. But I thought it would pass by like all the others, or at the very least, not be bad enough to incapacitate me. Then the rain came down on Tuesday while Gracie was at school and I was completely trapped. I had no way out and one very dark hole calling my name.

Just as I felt I was being sucked into the eye of the storm, Gracie came home and my logical thought had to try and muscle it's way back into my brain.

Do I need help? Can I get through this? Can I push it down until Robby gets home? The tear ducts say no. My clamped chest says no.

I searched my brain rapidly for friends and family who could meet this criteria at that exact moment in the day:

-Driving distance of 20 minutes or so
-Available right then
-Would not be stressed out by a rowdy Gracie in their home
-Would most likely not ask too many questions as to why I needed to drop Gracie off at their house for a few hours right away and wouldn't be uncomfortable with me calling while crying

Only a few people met this at that one given point in the day and it was a very small window that anyone would actually be available. Then, into my head popped Katie J. I decided that if she didn't answer her phone, that would be it and I would endure the day.

She answered on the third ring, my relief hit immediately and I tried to explain to her what what going on. She picked up on it instantly, offered to watch Gracie, and the conversation only lasted about 2 minutes. Then I gathered my things and was out the door with a clear freeway straight to her house. It worked out perfectly. I dropped her off, got a good hug from her before I left. The few hours she watched Gracie for me while I tackled the emotional storm inside me were the exact thing I needed at that very moment.

It hardly ever works out for me to actually have the chance to grieve when my body will not let me put it off anymore. I usually wait until the end of the week but this was something else, entirely. It was amazing how everything came together.

So with no way to repay her (because how could our roles ever be reversed?), I'm writing down this story and sharing it with others to remind me that she is around. She will always be my example of kindness and compassion that is so lacking in the world today.

Thank you, Katie. I'm so grateful for you, your sweet spirit, your little family, and amazing example.


KatieJ said...

Wow Melanie- thanks for the huge thank you, I didn't know what brought on your call before I read this but we honestly were happy to have Gracie and would be any time. I'm glad you know that you can call me!

Emily Ruth said...

I'm so glad Katie could be there for you. Heaven knows we need angels sometimes in whatever form they come. I love you.

grandmasmith said...

Mel, I'm so glad that you have good friends when you need them. Have I ever told you what a wonderful writer you are? Love,