Sunday, December 30, 2018

More than Henry

Henry's accident last October was such a big event that it's elbowed everything else out of the way. When Henry was still in the hospital, I was obsessed with raising money for his care. I relentlessly pressured all my friends to contribute to his Gofundme page. I sent giftcards and postage stamps (since I knew Reg wouldn't have time to go to the post office). It was all I could do, since Henry was in a coma and Reg was incommunicado.

Once Henry got out of the hospital and began calling all the time, I admit he has exhausted me. It was an adjustment that I'm still making -- he sounds like Henry, he has all Henry's memories, but he's not yet the same Henry.

I have allowed this to distract me from my other friends, and that's not right. Women I care about will be ringing in 2019 in heartache, and I must pay greater attention.

Joanna has been in a long-distance romance with the brother of her neighbor. He's semi-retired and lives on a sailboat in Panama. He came in for Christmas and she's been eager for me to meet him. She's also been excitedly planning a New Year's Day open house, themed to her New Orleans girlhood.

She texted me often when I was in Key West, wishing me a Merry Christmas and asking, "When will you be home, Darlin'?" Turns out they had a blow up on the Sunday before Christmas. "His loss," she texted bravely. But she is upset and it's manifesting itself by her removing both him and her neighbor from the guest list for the open house.

I wasn't going to attend the open house. Since I got home from Key West I've been seriously cocooning. Plus, Joanna and her friends can be intimidating. She brought a handful of them to one of our movie meetups and they talk about architecture and classical music and things I know nothing about. Not to mention that they're all very put together, and I have two new pimples on my chin.

But she's only invited 20 people. Not everyone is going to show up. This party is important to her and much planning has gone into it. So I'm heading over there on New Year's Day. Because she needs my support right now. I can do this.

My oldest friend is depressed again. Maybe it's been continual. She's been rather remote since spring. She has abandoned Facebook, seldom emails, doesn't want to talk on the phone. I thought that getting confirmation that she's cancer free would perk her up, but it hasn't.

I need to nurture our connection. I've been asking her questions -- via text -- about The Godfather (one of her passions). I got an EOB from my insurance company about my recent trip to Urgent Care that I'll run by her. I can figure it out on my own, but it won't cost me anything to acknowledge that this is something she's good at.

It's time for me to step it up and extend myself a bit more.

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