When a Friend is Sick

As the title says, I have a friend who is sick. Not a cold. Not the flu. She has cancer. The big C. I wish I could say that she will get better. I wish I could say that she will be able to see her children grow up.

But I can’t.

Her cancer is terminal and it is becoming apparent that she does not have much time left.

I wish there were a miracle for her. For her children.

My friend is also, tragically, a widow. When she is gone, her children will go and live with another family.

I do what I can to help their family, but it never feels as if I am doing enough.

This afternoon, her daughter was over for a playdate with my children. She is such a sweet child. Still very young. So sweet, so caring. We always enjoy her company.

I was playing outside with the girls. My daughter came over, grabbed my hands and started to dance with me. Then she grabbed my hands and leaned back as far as she could. “Come on Mom! Lean back too!”

And my friend’s daughter watched.

And I felt extreme guilt.

She can’t play like this with her mom any more. She is too sick and too weak. It breaks my heart to think about it.

I called her over and we played the game with her too. She laughed and smiled. “Let’s do it again!” I am glad she was able to come play and smile and have fun… and maybe even forget the things that are going on in her home, if only for a few minutes.

The rest of the playdate was greatly enjoyed by all. I was glad to offer a happy moment or two.

I guess it makes me feel in a way, like I am helping. Because there is nothing I can do about the cancer. There is nothing I can do to stop the cancer from stealing my friend’s life. If I can only offer an ear to listen, and a few happy, playful moments to her children, then at least I will know that I did something.

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3 Responses to When a Friend is Sick

  1. Deana says:


  2. Andrea says:

    That is what we do. We love each other. We love each other’s children. We recognize that a lot of life seems just plain not fair so we create as many moments of joy we possibly can while we can. So yes, you are helping. Whenever you bring joy, love, laughter, you are helping. Your friend, and her daughter, are lucky to have you! 🙂

  3. Deb says:

    You are helping … with laughter, lightness, kindness and love. Let the guilt go, no guilt allowed…it will take the pleasure away from all of you, don’t let it…no guilt allowed. Keep the play dates and kindness going…these are the beautiful things you can do over and over for your friend…a living tribute to her.

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