A lot of people consider me a cold fish. I’m not really outwardly demonstrative of my emotions. When the hubs had his rush to the emergency room – lost vision in one eye incident, I took the kiddo to co-op, I smiled and nodded and literally no one knew what was going down. Part of that is my anti-drama reaction.
When my MIL got diagnosed with the big C, I spent a couple of hours researching. Her brand of cancer, 16 month average life expectancy for ALL stages. And hers wasn’t caught early. I grieved, quietly, at home, while everyone else talked about how she was going to beat this, next year the family would, etc etc etc.
But I am the one she talked to about dying because I could let her without denying it or crying hysterically. I could let her vent her grief without laying mine upon her because I had already grieved.
A good friend just got diagnosed with the big C. I immediately researched her brand. It’s probably going to be ok. But when I got done researching, I spent the afternoon grieving. Sure, some would say that’s creepy, or premature, or ridiculous but now I’m prepared. When she needs to talk or needs someone to take her kids for the night, help her into the shower, or clean up her vomit, I’m prepared. I’ve grieved and my emotional needs won’t keep me from helping her. And if she doesn’t need me, if everything goes easy….It will be a pleasant surprise for my emotional base.