The Sun Also Rises

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I’m leaving up yesterday’s shining example of self-pity, because this is an experiment, dammit. Failing is an important part of the process and blah blah blah.

I’m tired. I’m tired and worried and a little put out, truth. I want my friend to do more for himself. I want someone else to do more for me. I want I want I want.

More truth? Sneer all you want—in this situation, at least in this situation, we’re all doing the best we can. He’s trying to stay independent and get better, trying to shake off the fog and terror of weeks of hospital walls and people sticking needles in his eye.

I’m trying to figure out how to get him the help he needs without succumbing to necessity at the cost of my mental and emotional health. Change a few minor things—fewer looming responsibilities in other areas, more free time, less financial worry, another car—and this becomes what it is anyway, just easier: An opportunity to be useful. But those things won’t change.

I’m irritable. I hate that, hate being that way, but I started noticing and it’s getting worse. I’m impatient and just irritated at things. Things and people, particularly people whose internal clocks are all la-dee-dah, so they dawdle and take their time, while I’m staring at an early wake-up call and another day smelling disinfectant. I can get snippy and sarcastic. Last night I suspected maybe I shouldn’t be around people all that much.

This is crazy talk. I’ll die without other people. Still, I’m trying to get a handle on the crankiness.

Again, I’m not beating myself up for being less than perfect. I’m also not running the risk of injuring my shoulder by patting myself on the back for being such a good friend. I have a long list of lousy friend behavior I’ve engaged in. Some of it, even though it happened decades ago, is pretty lousy.

And I’ve done some lousy stuff lately, which needs to be amended ASAP.

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We have deacons. Most Christian churches do, in some form. They are usually the underclass of ministry, the people without power (although, sometimes, budgets). This is done on purpose, freeing deacons to serve without getting swayed by internal politics or any other distractions.

We have really good ones. They are mostly women but not all. They feature quite a few retirees but also quite a few people with serious job responsibilities. None as serious as this, though. They are the superheroes of this community, waiting for their bat signal when regular authorities are stymied. People who are reluctant to give much to the church proper for whatever reason, disagreements or just personal preference, tend to donate to the deacons’ fund. That’s how people on fixed incomes get their cars repaired.

They’re small, and of course they focus on the needs of members of the congregation; that’s why they’re there. But their credo, assuming they have a special one (I don’t think so), sees no difference between those in need and those in need we know.

And they’ve had my back this entire time. Some have made jokes that they’ve just subcontracted deacon work out to me. I kind of weakly shake my head and think, Nope, this is not my best side but they hang in there, sending me cards and emails, writing me checks to cover gas and other expenses.

These are the best people. If you want to include me in their midst, you’d be making a judgment error. I’m mostly following their lead, the path that they marked already. I really don’t want to drive down to Seattle through rush hour again this morning. I owe their example, though.

See? This stuff isn’t rocket science, as I said the other day. Just find some nice people and do what they do. Keep the appointments, fill the meds. It’ll be OK.

Chuck Sigars2 Comments