Thank You. Part four.
For anyone new to my blog, I like to write thank you letters, and I like to post them publicly on my blog, because it’s the brightest spotlight I can offer. I generally think these things through with a lot of time and effort put in to finding the best word I can to clearly show how much I appreciate you. Today, without premeditation, without time spent searching for that perfect things to say, I have a friend in dark times that deserves what love I can rush to her. Straight from my heart to yours:
I think, in some ways, we got off to a rough start, you, with your heart on your sleeve, and me, guarded and slow to trust new faces. You would reach out to me, and I would react from a place of stress and ill health. I found, over time, that we react similarly to angry people. We care too much and take it all personally. With a capacity to care so endlessly deep, it makes the small stresses in life sometimes seem bigger than they really are. When I was diagnosed with cancer, some of the people closest to me were so overcome with sadness that they were unable to offer the support I needed. But not you. Even though we weren’t that close (at least not on a level where I would expect you to support me the way you did), you dropped everything you were doing to help me. You put together my first art show, you found a location, you ordered all the prints, you gathered donations to pay for those prints, you rallied people together to make the event bigger than I could have imagined.
The show was a success in more ways than one. It helped me pay bills and lifted that immediate monetary stress. That would have been enough, but you did more than that for me. You gave me the confidence to have more art shows, and feel like my art was good enough to put myself out there. You gave me a new level of confidence that I had only previously hoped for. You facilitated a series of events that showed me how much people care about me. My heart grew three sizes that day.
The road ahead is tough for you, but look at how many people have rushed to your side. I’ve learned, through help from you, that people don’t rush to your side if you haven’t earned it. We look back on our situations and think “what if I had done things differently.” It’s a blessing and a curse. The blessing comes from owning our situation in life, and knowing that we have the power to cultivate our own happiness, but the curse comes when those negative thoughts become heavier than the truth. Sure I could have eaten better and taken care of myself, and just maybe there’s a small chance that I wouldn’t have had cancer, but I’ve decided I can’t blame myself so harshly. I’ve made positive changes to improve my future and that’s the best I can do. No one would look and me and think, “she should really blame herself and be more sad about her actions.” And so I extend that same idea to you. It is true for all of us that we could have done things differently to feel less pain in life, but no one is looking at you and saying to themselves, “she should really blame herself more.”
I wish I could do more and be more for you. I hope that my words can help even a sliver as much as your actions have. You are a good person and a caring friend. I believe, as time heals your pain, that you’ll come out the other side happier than you have ever been. I don’t say things just to be nice, because I don’t know how and because I don’t like false hope. I truly believe that you have planted so many seeds of happiness around you, that it will all catch up to you sooner than you know. Let those of use who care about you carry you through the darkness. It’s the least we can do.
All my love,