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Posted on November 14, 2023 by Annette Petrick in Annette Petrick, death, Friendship

My Friend Is Dying

My friend is dying.




I read somewhere that part of the privilege of being human is getting a moment when we can say goodbye.

How would you react if a friend shared with you that her death was imminent? What would you say or feel?  What kind of support would you offer and then provide? That’s what I had to figure out.

My Friend Is Dying

We had worked together years and years ago.  When I left our mutual employment, we maintained the friendship from a distance. We’d catch up a couple of times a year, and it was like we had talked just the day before.

So, her call today was most welcome.  But her voice, somehow, was different.  It’s just as joyful but somehow serious as well.  “I am dying,” she told me.  As a matter of fact, it’s straightforward.  No embellishment.  A simple statement.

I knew she was battling one of those unfair and deadly diseases.  But they had kept it at bay until now.

“I’m not afraid,” she told me.  I’ve done right during my life, I know the Lord, and I am ready.”  She was headed to hospice.

My first thought was that I had to go and see her.  Then I thought better of it.

We had not been in the same room together in 32 years. I had an image of this tiny, exuberant blonde lady with beautiful blue eyes.  The right direction now was to let us both keep our images of our young and eager selves.

There are lots more phone calls.  They get more difficult as the days roll by.

She has less stamina and coherence.

But here we are, keeping our friendship fresh and bright right to the last day.  On one phone call, when we say goodbye, it will be goodbye for good.

P.S.   And that was that.  We laughed on our phone calls and shared heartfelt imaginary embraces. The inevitable was seldom mentioned. There is no need for discussion on that. The purpose of our calls was to relive good days and repeat the mantra of gratitude for having had each other in our lives.

For more information on children and grief

Annette Petrick

About the author

Author and radio personality Annette E. Petrick has lived in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia for more than 25 years. That means she is ALMOST accepted as a local. She shares her days between writing and recording her daily radio show and enjoying life in the country with her husband, Bill.

With a career as a nationally recognized public speaker, the essence of her work has always been the spoken or written word. She considered wordsmithing as a God-given gift, which she was expected to use.
She combined those skills into a unique 90 second radio show. Her insightful short stories first went on the air in 2006 and are still broadcast daily. Consider This with Annette Petrick has also become a website, a blog where readers and listeners can comment and leave their opinion, an iTune favorite and a weekly inspirational email to subscribers.

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