It’s Monday. Here’s some stuff on my mind this week.
When a tragedy occurs . . . a death in a family, an accident, a terminal diagnosis . . . it’s human nature to say something along the lines of: let me know what I can do to help or I’m here if you need anything. And I think that’s great. But if you say it, if you offer, if someone follows up and asks for help . . . please make sure you do what you said you would do. I am very very grateful for all of the help we got after Dale’s accident. People were wonderful and they did things we asked them to do, like helping fill the bird feeders, and also things we didn’t ask for, like dropping off coffee and treats and even dinner. But there were also people who said the words let me know what I can do and then we told them and then they didn’t follow through. And there were people who never offered, people we thought we could count on, and . . . crickets. Now. I realize I could potentially sound ungrateful and that’s not my intention here at all. I know how fortunate we are to have wonderful family and friends who went above and beyond over and over again. My point in writing about this is to serve as a lesson for you. If you are someone who offers to help a friend with a big chore (or even a little one, for that matter) please make sure you follow through with that. If you don’t, your friend will be left wondering why you didn’t. They will be hurt and let down and they might question your feelings about them and maybe even your integrity. Don’t be the person who makes a promise and then doesn’t keep it. Rather, be the person who shows up with coffee and treats, be the person who keeps the promise. And, if for some reason you can’t keep that promise because life happens, then be the person who explains why it’s not possible, be the person who apologizes for dropping the ball, and then (if you can) offer to do something else.
Whew. I’m glad I got that off my chest because what I really need is to let this go. To focus on all of the good that our people did and to forget the tiny few who didn’t show up. And to remember all of this next time I say the words: let me know what I can do.
And I think that’s quite enough for a Monday morning.