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the long relationship with friends
Zuhria DamaL
3 min read



My maternal grandmother was admitted in the hospital. She had been sick from a long time and was admitted for the second time that month.


She had a close friend who visited her almost everyday at home. When she saw the house locked, she called up my aunt who told her what happened. She rushed to the hospital and shouted at not being told earlier.


She insisted on staying the afternoon when it was difficult for the my mother and uncle and aunt to manage being there. They accepted gratefully.


But she came everyday after that. Even though there wasn't any need to. Even though she couldn't meet her friend each day. And she kept coming. When the phone calls and visits from concerned relatives stopped, she was still there every afternoon from 2 to 6, even when there were people already there.


She, very unexpectedly, was like a pillar of strength for everyone. She is one of my grandmother’s oldest friends, and everyone usually felt much more calm when she was there to pacify them.


When my grandma had an unexpected seizure, my uncle panicked and called the doctor. The friend was calm and helped however she could. When it was all over and my grandma had a tube that got her enough oxygen and was unconscious, the friend went outside the ICU in the waiting lounge and cried. For the first time in two weeks of my grandmother being admitted there. The children tried to calm her down but she was calm already, just that she was crying inconsolably.


It's weird how the my grandma became friends with this woman. The woman was a cook by profession. She cooked for the family on special occasions. She'd always had a special bond with my grandmother, especially after my aunt who has polio was born and my grandma needed help around the house. When her husband started earning enough, she stopped working. But she still kept visiting and cooking things for the children. Now the children have children (me and my younger sister). And we love that woman's food too. That's how long it's lasted.


My grandma worked as a social worker and has had a lot of other close friends. They were there for and with her at different times in her life. Some she's still in touch with, some she's not. But this woman? She's been there ever since they became friends.


How?


By just being there. There's no reason to be there with a friend. But you're still there. I know that there's a lot of things you can't help by being there. That's true. The friend can't make my grandma healthy again. But by being there with somebody, you make the person feel they aren't alone in this. Even if they're experiencing hell alone, that hell is made slightly more tolerable by you being there.



Zuhria DamaL
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@zuhriadamal
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