What can I do.

Saving the usual PR and social media posts for another day. Some people in my life have had some setbacks and when it hits home, I have to take a pause.

What can I do?

What do I say to someone with a broken heart?

How do I help someone realize their dreams while overcoming their professional challenges?

Is there something I can do to take the load off of friends feeling overwhelmed, lost, betrayed?

Are there any words of comfort for a friend when someone they love has died from a senseless tragedy?

What can I do?

I don’t know. I want to stop what I’m doing and rush to others aid, but once I get there have nothing more than a hug to offer.

I don’t know. I can’t make decisions for them or take away the hurt.

I don’t know. And it occurs to me how much I have said “I” when it’s not me, but thinking of them.

What I can do.

Make the time for their calls. Listen.

Take time for their email. Read, reply.

Take time for their updates and messages. Read, reply, share if it will help.

Share my time for their problems and make time to help.

I’ve been a vicarious counselor once-removed helping out a ‘helper’ friend. I’ve jumped in the deep end, sharing lots of business advice. I’ve taken the calls and made sure I’ve let the other party speak first, tell me their tales of woe before I launch into mine.

I’ve read emails and messages, offered what advice I have to share. I’ve been a sounding board and I’ve been a kick in the pants, I’ve done the bitch sessions and the teary calls. I’ve told lots of silly quips, platitudes and jokes to lighten the mood and maybe bring a brief smile to someone’s face.

I just wish I could do more.

Photo credit: this picture is everywhere. I used it since cute baby animals seem to be the rule for this kind of post.

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14 thoughts on “What can I do.

  1. Sometimes being a good friend is worth more than anything else. Lots of people are willing to dole out advice but not as many are willing to just listen.
    Jack @ TheJackB recently posted..Trust Me

    1. Thanks Jack. I try to listen, really hear before I speak. Advice is sometimes the easier part, but giving time or actual help.. that can make a real difference. FWIW.

  2. I realized a few years ago that we can do for others means a lot more than what we think. Sometimes, just being there, not saying anything will bring comfort to someone.
    Like Marianne points out, just knowing that someone is ready to listen, will do wonders for a person.

    I once had a man die in my arms and I felt helpless for weeks. When I met his widow, she only said one thing and this stuck with me when I feel I should do more ‘He didn’t die alone’

    Having someone by our side on this journey means a lot, especially when that someone is you Davina 🙂
    John Falchetto recently posted..Real life Jerry Maguire, Jimmy Poon on sport management and Olympic dreams

    1. It does make difference John, just talking with others who ‘get it’ makes a world of difference. Think that’s one of the true gifts of this interweb-connected world, being able to reach out, meet others like ourselves. I’ve never dealt with loss as you have, could not imagine. I still have my parents and was lucky to know my grandparents a long time; still have my dad’s dad with us.. blessings all. Hell I’ll even throw my sometimes annoying siblings (and BFFs who are like siblings) into that pile; they may drive me crazy but I’m so, so lucky to have them. For wine I will.

  3. I’ve had my share of troubles during the past few years, and I can absolutely, positively tell you that you are doing exactly what people who are hurting need. Sometimes, just knowing that someone is there to listen helps more than you an imagine.

    Don’t sell yourself short–you’re already being a wonderful friend. Hope you’re having a fab weekend.
    Marianne Worley recently posted..How I Knew I Would Lose My Job the Day Before it Happened

    1. Called a friend the other night to vent about something, and she wisely pointed out it’s the ‘same shit, different decade’ just another saga. Sigh.. always something. My life may feel like an unfunny black comedy of errors, but I’m better off than others, need to smack myself with that once in a while.

  4. I’m hurting, can you send me $25 so I can go to Checkers and get some beer too? You don’t even have to listen to me whine.

    You hit the nail on the head; sometimes all you can do is listen and that can be enough. When I know my friends are hurting I try to reach out to them in some form or fashion, just to let them know somebody does care.

    And sometimes it is the smallest things that make the biggest impact.

    Have a great weekend.
    Bill Dorman recently posted..What is the meaning of life?

    1. See if it’s me, I ask for winning lottery numbers but I hear ya. I wish I thought to reach out more sometimes, think I don’t do enough of that via email, FB, other channels… Not even when someone is having a hard time, just to do it. Too easy to get caught up in our lives, but the other day a friend sent a long email explaining a tragedy that hit her family, hoping that just the words would help. Got me to rethink things, post something a little different. FWIW.

  5. Hey thank you Davina. I really appreciate! Glad you enjoy my face. lol

    And thank you for being inspiring. I need to take those moments and not write about work too. That’s partially why I have my personal blog, but I don’t use it enough!
    Christian Hollingsworth recently posted..My Top 10 Commenters

  6. I think Shonali makes a great point. The very fact that you’re reaching out and trying to improve the way you help will go a long way. A long way indeed! You’ll be able to push through the clutter of life – and simply be. A friend. A person of support. A firm foundation. That’s often all that’s needed in a friend, because simply, we can’t make choices for others.
    Christian Hollingsworth recently posted..Why Building A Blogging Community Is More Important

    1. Before I forget Christian, I like your new Gravatar. I noticed it a couple weeks ago, been meaning to tell you. No we can’t think for others, make their decisions. And it’s easy to fall into the trap of ‘if I only…’ and think ‘if I only had more money or more time..’ That’s true but it’s not always helpful. Once in a while it hits me to not write about work, to take a chance on what I’m thinking at the moment so I appreciate your feedback. Thanks.

    1. Thanks Shonali. A lot of things seem to be hitting all at once with a few of my friends right now, and yesterday one of them shared some sad news. I’m also being pulled in a few directions at once, trying to do what I can.. so I just didn’t feel like the usual blog fodder. BTW I liked your post on teaching, always thought I might enjoy an ‘intro to PR’ class, ya know? FWIW.

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