Friday, March 6, 2015

When you need your BFFs the most

by Lorraine Bartlett / Lorna Barrett / L.L. Bartlett

There comes a time when you are at your lowest ebb.  I'm pretty much there right now. Two of my family members are looking down the gun barrel of cancer, and that's not a place where anybody wants to be. One is living under a certain death sentence; the other is just coming up on a pretty grim diagnosis. (And she lives hundreds of miles away and where Mr. L and I are, and we cannot give her any day-to-day support.)

And there's me smack in the middle.

To add insult to injury, yesterday I got the old jury duty summons.

Sometimes I think I could just pull out a spade and dig a hole only big enough for me to hide in.

And yet ... out on the horizon is more than a tiny spot of positivity and support.  It is the connection I have with my two BFFs.  It probably won't surprise you to find out that they are two of my fellow Cozy Chicks.  They are Leann Sweeney and Ellery Adams.

I don't know how we connected, and I sure as hell don't care at this moment in time, but somehow the three of us did connect and we are there for each other when things get bad.  We are separated by hundreds of miles, but we're as close as an email.

When one of us has a bad day, the other two are there to offer virtual hugs and words of support. When we have things to celebrate, we share them with each other first.

The first emails I look forward to in the morning are from my best girlfriends.  The last email I usually write at night are to these same two women.

Are you lucky enough to have one or more best girlfriends in your life?

35 comments:

Gram said...

Yes I am. When I moved to another state I was so grateful for email. If it isn't instant it is the closest thing we have if the telephone is too intrusive. I have an old friend with the big C and she is hundreds of miles away, email does the trick.

mary kennedy said...

Lorraine, lots of hugs to you! You are such a wonderful person and such an inspiration to all of us. This is such a trying time for you. You're right, e-mail support from friends can really soften life's blows. Where would we be without our friends? You're right, it would be a tough road, indeed. We are all thinking of you and sending you good thoughts.

Alison Marable said...

I am so sorry you are going through such a rough time and so glad you have your BFFs. From what I have seen so far, it's no surprise that they would make such great friends.

Diane LaBrie Leverson said...

Lorraine, I am so sorry your family and you have to go through this. All you can do it talk to them and pray that all of you will be helped to get through it. It is wonderful that you have Leann and Ellery to talk to. Best friends are really the best. I do have one friend in particular who has been my best friend for 58 years. She lives about an hour away but will get someone to drive her down to me if I need her. I talk to her on the phone 3 times a day and even though that seems a lot, we can talk for almost an hour each time. (We are the reason we each have total call on our phones) I dread the day when one of us is gone. Please know that all of us are here for you if you want to vent or just need a kind word.

Kate Collins said...

Support is so important in these times. When my husband passed away, my best friend along with my kids pulled me through the darkest of times. God be with you and your loved ones, Lorraine.

Leann Sweeney said...

Lorraine, you are a strong and giving person. I am with you everyday. xoxo

Mary Jane Maffini said...

So sorry to hear about this "C" situation, Lorraine. So very hard on you. You are lucky in your BFF's for sure (two amazing women as you are yourself). I am also lucky to have wonderful friends. When my hubby was very ill, I found out how amazing they were.

XOXO

MJ

Anonymous said...

Beautiful and you couldn't have "picked" sweeter BFFs. Hope things get better, soon.

Maggie Sefton said...

Friends are so important. I have to get together and share regularly. Good friends here in Colorado and my oldest childhood friends Diane & Nancy back in Northern VA. That's another reason I fly back regularly several times a year. Family and also I want to be with dear friends and share. And see what is happening in their lives. We help each other get thru the challenges that come up in everyone's lives. And we do care about you, Lorraine. Believe that. :)

Lorraine Bartlett said...

They are the greatest -- but then ALL the Chicks are fantastic ladies.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

((((((((((((((((((((((((( U )))))))))))))))))))))))))

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Thank you, Mary.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Thank you, Diane. I'm so glad to know you and your BFF connect on a regular basis.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Thanks, Kate. (((((((((( U ))))))))))

Lorraine Bartlett said...

(((((((((( U ))))))))))

Lorraine Bartlett said...

I always know the Chicks are in my corner. Thank you, Maggie. (((((((((( U ))))))))))

Denise Zendel said...

I am very fortunate to work directly with one of my bffs, it makes the job so much more enjoyable. My other bff ( and chosen Mom) also used to work here, and even though she escaped (retirement) we are still in regular contact. They have been with me through some really hideos times and some truly great times.

As for jury duty, one of my attorneys told me that saying " Well, he must be guilty, he got arrested right?" was a sure ticket out of the pool. My suggestion is that, if you want to avoid service, just don't answer any questions unless they are directly put to you. The ones who talk the most almost always get selected.

It'very hard to watch loved ones struggle. Maybe you can be the break in their lives from the big C. We all need distraction. Xo

Denise Zendel said...

I am very fortunate to work directly with one of my bffs, it makes the job so much more enjoyable. My other bff ( and chosen Mom) also used to work here, and even though she escaped (retirement) we are still in regular contact. They have been with me through some really hideos times and some truly great times.

As for jury duty, one of my attorneys told me that saying " Well, he must be guilty, he got arrested right?" was a sure ticket out of the pool. My suggestion is that, if you want to avoid service, just don't answer any questions unless they are directly put to you. The ones who talk the most almost always get selected.

It'very hard to watch loved ones struggle. Maybe you can be the break in their lives from the big C. We all need distraction. Xo

Carol N Wong said...

Sorry what you and your BFFs are going through. When I was working, one of the most difficult things was sitting beside a friend who was dying of lung cancer. He told a few of us on the day after 911 so I always associate that day with him. He passed away three weeks after he told me that he was going home, he could take it any more.

You have heard of there is no little bit of pregnant right? Well, I have a little bit of cancer.It is a blood cancer that has no cure but there is treatment. Usually, that means you can get a few years of remission with treatment or a stem cell transplant. There is a better chance with a stem cell transplant but after you are 65, your body can no longer deal with that. WIth this, you have to be monitored by life. So I watch my % of cancer go up and estimate when I will finally get it. I am 68 so I know the treatment would be chemo. There are a lot of people who have what I have and it never developes into cancer because they die from something else. I have two BFFs and both of them are hundreds of miles away. But my best support comes from my support group. There is a large group of us going through this together..

emilia.m said...

the BFF subject is a sensitive issue for me...
have one. all the way across the ocean... :(

I'm very sorry about the Ugly C situation :( Stay strong for those that need that the most, but don't forget about yourself in all that...
Hugs!

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry about all that you and your family are dealing with. Sometimes our struggles can make us feel so terribly lonely - it can be hard to realize how many people there are that care about you.
Very few of us are actually as alone as we sometimes feel we are. We have bigger communities than we know! And often it takes just one person to listen or to say "I'm sorry." And suddenly the weight is not nearly so heavy.
Lorraine, you have wonderful friends. In addition, there is a huge community of readers who also care. You aren't alone.
Liz C.

Annette N said...

WOW - My family has had the C attack too. And it sure does feel at times as though we are in a war. The best thing you can do is let people know you love them. And, you are already very good at that.

And yes Ma'am, you are very blessed to have those particular BFFs. But, then y'all already know that. Isn't it fortunate that when people for whom you care live far away, and we live in the time of instant connections?

I have said a prayer for you and your family. And the jury duty, figure it this way, you may get wonderful ideas for a book or two. Or you can glare at one of the attorneys and they will not want you sitting there at all.

loveamystery said...

With love and thoughts going out to you. Now I don't post this on facebook but 3 years ago I was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer went through 7 weeks of chemo and radiation, hospitalized for three weeks when I thought I wouldn't come out. Husband brought home and I was fed with a tube in my stomach and given intravenous medicine and other meds. After three 0pet scans my cancer has not progressed and I do everything I did before, albeit showers. I tell everyone I love them every day and I don't take anything for granted but I'm here! There are times the outcome they expect doesn't happen so hang in there, send love and know that you are loved as well. If it helps to know that there are prayers for you and your family from people you have brought joy and comfort to. We care.

Grandma Cootie said...

Friends are so important. I can tell you cherish them. I have a friend I met on our first day of work almost 35 years ago. She is always there for me, whatever my need.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Oh, Carol, I'm so sorry to hear you have the Big C, too. It sounds like yours is the same as one I hold dear, and she's the same age, so it looks like chemo is in her future. I'll keep my fingers crossed that you have a really L-O-N-G remission, and I'll tell her about seeing a support group. T hank you. ((((((u))))))

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Thank you, Liz.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Thanks, Annette.

Lorraine Bartlett said...

I'm taking inspiration from your comment, and hope you continue to do well. Thank you so much. ((((((((((U))))))))))

Lorraine Bartlett said...

Doesn't it feel good to have someone like that in your corner?

Rachelle21 said...

My husband and I both lost fathers to cancer. I have several friends who have survived breast cancer and my Curves coach/owner has survived a rare cancer. I have ever met you but enjoin reading the books you write. Duffy Brown has helped me when I needed it and would love to meet her one day. My husband has been in a VA Nursing home since May and sometimes I feel very lonely. Reading books by the Cozy chicks can help. Your readers help by buying the books that you write. Those of us that prey can say praye, s for your family and for you when you need us to. Books are our friends, so why not the authors of them. It took me over 30 years to meet some of the authors I read as a and some of them I hsd the pleasure of meeting more than once. I cherish the time I spent with them.

Kay Bennett said...

First I am so sorry for what you are going through right now and praying for you and your friends and family. Second I know how it is to just connect with someone. I have two best friends that I know i can always count on. They too are miles and miles away. We talk every day and sometimes more than once. I believe that people come into your life at the exact moment they are supposed to and they did that for sure.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry about the illness in your family, I know how helpless it makes you feel. I cared for my Mom during her cancer death as my Brother was undergoing rectal colostomy and colon cancer surgeries one after another. I understand how stressful it is . Cancer is insatiable and horrible. BFF's were my salvation to My BFF would talk to me on the phone every night, no matter if it was 3 am or not. She stepped up and cared for my home and cat so I did not worry as I stayed at my Moms until she died. Everyone needs a BFF like that.
I am very impressed by all of you as writers, I just knew you were all good people and this confirms it. How wonderful they are providing much needed support. That is the mark of a truly good person.

Sherry Smith said...

You are truly such a wonderful person, as are your BFFS. I'm so sorry this is happening. I will keep praying. I'm sorry to say, with all the moving I had to do when I was young, I was unable to make BFFs. I would think they would be a wonderful comfort to you, which you truly deserve. God bless.

Aurian said...

I hope your family does survive this. And yes, I do have a BFF, she lives only 5 minutes away, and we met through our mutual love for books and reading.

Barb W. said...

So glad you have such wonderful friends. Prayers for you and your family.