Alana was in town for an amazing week, so I’ve neglected this blog for real life!! (If I have the opportunity, I may post retrospective posts on that week.)
I had the opportunity to spend some time with Timothy and Grace this past Tuesday. Reflecting on it in counseling, it seemed like there was nothing extraordinary about a morning with them; but, at the same time, it was the normality of it all that made it so precious to me.
A few days before I had texted Grace to ask her if she (or her husband) would be in town and if they could possibly accompany me to an appointment with a neurologist. She texted me back right away, saying yes and offering to drive me there. We went bright and early to the clinic (for the first appointment of the day.) She sat through my visit, told me crazy stories about her family and her life, watched the doctor do the extensive exam and tell me everything was normal, and took me back to her house. Simple enough, right? Nothing unusual or momentous happened. So why did retelling it to my counselor bring tears to my eyes?
The beauty (for me) lay in the fact that it was all so normal. Grace didn’t ask why I needed to go to the neurologist, what kind of visit it would be, what time it would be, how long the visit would take, what I expected her to do, or anything. She just read that I needed a friend to hold my hand and said yes. She was there for me because I needed a friend in that moment and she chose to be that friend to me. Her friendship was unconditional. It didn’t matter why I was nervous or what she needed to do or where we would be. We are friends, and friends support each other. Period.
As we were leaving the clinic, she asked me a question that stopped me in my tracks. Grace said, “Everything being normal. How do you feel? Are you okay?” It wasn’t so much what she said as how she said it. I knew that she really cared about me and wanted to make sure that I was okay emotionally. But the question didn’t have any assumptions. She didn’t indicate that I should be mad or happy or confused. She wasn’t demanding information. She was just letting me know that if I needed to talk through this aspect of the visit, she was open and available for dialogue. The compassion. The respect. The humility. The patience. The peace.I felt really cherished. It’s so rare that someone ever says something that doesn’t have any strings attached. More than anything, I felt that she honored me as a person in this friendship. This moment was about me and not about satisfying her duty for friendship or making her feel useful as a friend.
I told her that neurological diseases are probably the one category of illnesses that I really rather not have. So even though we still have no idea what happened, I felt assured and at peace.
After that, the day continued. I went back to her house and talked about activities we had been involved with together. Timothy, Grace, and I hung out in the kitchen making dessert for their dinner that night. But I left their house grateful for a beautiful friendship and treasuring all the moments we’d had together.
Celebrating the ordinary in the extraordinary & grateful for God’s provision,