Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A TRUE FRIEND IS SOMEONE WHO REACHES FOR YOUR HAND AND TOUCHES YOUR HEART

I have been blown away by the response to my blog post this past Saturday where I simply sat here and told you how I was feeling. . . . .it wasn't a pity party - far from it - it was just a post that I knew I had to write about my sweet Ben. I had to talk about it.
And, of course, there's a give-away mentioned in the post to help shove me (mentally) back into my happy, joyfilled and blessed life. Giving gifts and writing notes of encouragement are two things that I love to do so having a giveaway to balance a really hard March and a horribly sad weekend made total sense to me.

I checked my email on Sunday and there were a few comment email notices for that particular post. They were wonderful and I felt the care and concern.
Then at 3:00 p.m. we had to do something that I didn't expect to have to do until today or tomorrow.....Saturday night after I wrote my blog post, I went to bed and woke in the morning to a very sick Ben. He had gone downhill very quickly Saturday night and we knew that we couldn't wait any longer. I had said in my blog post that "early this week" we would have to say good-bye to our sweet Ben - I wasn't ready to endure it on Sunday. No way, no how, it was too soon, I wasn't ready!!
But, I took some deep breaths, prayed, put on my big girl panties and dealt with it.
I sat with Ben, rubbed his head and told him how much he was loved, how much he would be missed, how sorry I was that he was so sick and how sorry I was that he was suffering and how it was the hardest thing to do but, that I hoped he understood it was a gift..

A small part of me died Sunday
when I had to tell him good-bye.

But, enough sadness.
Let me tell you something.
I feel just as strongly about writing this blog post as I did writing my blog post on Saturday.
So. After numerous deep breaths, a swipe of my nose (no kleenex and I can't be bothered to wheel myself into the b.r. to snag some t.p.), I came back to my computer early evening on Sunday to check my email.

Finally, we reach the point of this post.
(I do tend to give a lot of information, but I want you to feel like you're sitting right next to me and I'm telling you all of this verbally. Does that make sense to anyone *besides me*? No??)

When I checked my email Sunday evening and then again on Monday and yet again today,
I have been so touched by the support y'all have showered on me. And, how you have wrapped your arms around me, how you've reminded me that God blessed me and my family with Ben for many years. So many comments that I can't recall at this moment what they all said and I still have at least 40 to read.
I must read them slowly and respond with a message of my own, so it's taking a bit to work to get through all of them.(*which is a wonderful thing, btw*)
I am so, so blessed by y'all. I know I've said it before, but, I think it's worth repeating. . . . .some of you I've never met face to face but I feel like we live down the street from each other and we're such good friends! We get together in each other's studio to play "art", we go junking, we go to estate sales, Anne:), we go out to lunch, we take road trips, we go to art retreats together, oh, we just have a marvelous time! *deep sigh*
I can't thank you enough for the outpouring of love and concern that I have felt from each of you - even a couple of lurkers:). The stories of your own pets and the last days of their lives, of how their deaths impacted you, and simple comments telling me that I'm being prayed for, that I'm loved.

Wow. So you can imagine how I felt this afternoon when the Fed Ex truck drove up.
Well, at first I didn't feel anything because the Tank gets lots of Fed Ex envelopes and I didn't pay any attention knowing it wasn't for me.
My mother, however, went out because Mr. Ex rang the doorbell. She walks back in the bedroom carrying this long box but I'm in the middle of answering a post comment and just glance up.
Boy, howdy, I was focused (it's an age thing) because it was pretty obvious what was in the box.
Flowers for the Tank?? Maybe. Flowers for me?? More likely than for the Tank.......and the box WAS for me. Oh, my gosh, someone sent me flowers. I couldn't imagine who would send me flowers. . .I had surgery, but that was 1 1/2 weeks ago......hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. So, I open the box (after checking for a return address on the box - no clue, none).
Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh.
Oh, my goodness. . . . .tulips.
Tulips!! Oh, my gosh. . . .
Tulips.
Tulips for me?
Yes, tulips for me.
Tulips that bloom in April.
Telling me that April will be better.
Don't loose your joy, not for a moment.

Wait. There's more??
Candy??
The last day and a half of March are lookin' up.
So, let's look at the card and see who has blessed me.
Who has sent me April tulips and March chocolates??

It wasn't funny so you shouldn't be laughing.
"Love, Me"??
My first thought was how in the world was I going to thank whomever sent these gorgeous April tulips and March chocolates to me??? I wouldn't be able to rest until I found out who to thank!
I called ProFlowers and asked real nice for Mr. Pro to tell me who sent them and he told me they have this stupid privacy oath. Sounded more like the Mason's to me.
He told me he could call the sender and see if he could get permission to tell me.
Okay, fine, just don't mess with me, I don't have that many chocolates.
He didn't mess with me, he told me who sent them.
I told him that "she" would have been very high on my list of possibilities.
I said it while I was smiling. Big.

Julie Ann Grakowsky of Kitchen Floor Creations,
my past blog "lurker", my present day dear friend that I met through my blog.
I simply adore her.
She is precious to me.
And she blessed me today in a way that is rare.
She reached out for my hand and touched my heart.
If you have managed to stick with me to this point, you deserve one million dollars.
I don't have one million dollars, but I've got lots of hugs for you when we see each other!

XOXO,
Jan

If you have never visited Julie Ann's blog, oh, you just have to!! You won't be disappointed! She
has a wonderful blog and you'll enjoy yourself!!

18 comments:

Lynn Richards said...

OHHHHHHH.....what a sweet, sweet story. Just the best friend! So glad some joy came to your door, dear Jan!
love,
Lynn

Terri Gordon said...

Oh Jan, What a beautiful post, I have been thinking of you all week. I am so glad that someone sent you the lovely tulips and candy, what a wonderful friend. Things will get better, but I know how tough it is for you right now, just remember that there are lots of people you love and care about you. I wish you well and hope April is better for you. You are still in my thoughts and prayers. Hugs, Terri

Linda B said...

What a beautiful gift at just the right time! Friends truly are gems, aren't they:)

Debra@Common Ground said...

Those are THE most beautiful tulips. How blessed we all are to have such wonderful friends and relationships. and I count you dear Jan. Now share some of those chocolates!
love ya,
Debra

Brandi @ Frugal Farmhouse said...

I'm so sorry you had to say goodbye to ben so quickly :( That was so sweet of your bloggy friend to send those beautiful flowers :)

Julie Ann said...

Oh Jan, your story of Ben's last few moments brought me to tears. I know I would have *loved* him!! I am sure friends and family who have gone before are taking care of him now, until you go to be with them- which Won't Be ANYTIME SOON!!! But until then, he's in loving arms :) Love you and I'm humbled to have been graced by God to bring a smile to your face yesterday! *Hugs*

Bettyann said...

ahhh is she the sweetest thing on earth..what a dear, dear friend you have...but honey you are the best and we all just want to give you big(((hugs)))...cheers good thoughts coming at you...take care..

Kim from The Sheep's Nest said...

Hello Jan, this is my first time here and I just came over to thank you so much for the linens you added to Anne's giveaway, as I am the big winner. After reading your post I am just welled up. I knew that this blogging thing was a great idea. I have just started to form some new friendships and when I see the outpouring of love that you have received at this hard time I overwhelmed by the kindness of others. In a world that has seemed to be going to hell lately it is so nice to know that sweet, sincere people are still out there and that I have found them and hope to have a chance to befriend them. When I receive my linens and know that they came from you I will remember these things as well as the sadness of the lose of a pet. I am a huge animal lover myself and know how much of a human attachment we can form with them. hugs to you,Kim

Kim said...

Jan I am speechless. Please, please, please go read my last post. I think God sent me here today.

Abbie said...

Ooo!! Such friendships are rare and beautiful! (human friendships and our pets,too) It is so hard to understand why things happen, or for what end.. thank you for sharing.
Thank you Jan, for being my new friend!
xoxo~
Abbie
and if we were closer, I'd wheel you a junk shop and we'd browse through all the lovely tidbits together!

Diva Kreszl said...

I'm so sorry to hear you had to let Ben go earlier than you planned. Julie ann is a wonderful friend!

Debby said...

I am so sorry about Ben! You have shared a beautiful post with us today, your tulips are gorgeous, what a sweet friend. Thinking of you and sending huge hugs your way.
xoxo
Debby

Shelly said...

Oh Lordy Jan,

Im crying buckets! Because of your sweet Ben, Because of Julie Ann's love and rememberence. Because of this crazy blogland and the people you meet and who's lives touch you deeply, though miles apart!

I recently sent Julie Ann a little giveaway from a drawing I had on my blog. Although it doesn't compare with the scentiment and generosity she has shown you, I hope in my own little way, it makes her smile a bit this week as well!

True believer that you get what you give!

Again, you and all of yours, are in my thoughts and prayers!

Big hugs,
Shell

debsea said...

oh, i love a happy ending!

Joanna {sweet finds} said...

Hey Jan!

Of course I remember you. You had a very nice set up at the PC vendor show. Thanks for signing up for my class. It's gonna be fun! I've already started shopping for you girls. :)

So, guess what? I am gonna meet your friend Julie Ann in a few weeks. We are both going to stay with Sherry Williams in Gray, GA for a few days before Jenn Hayslips event in Savannah.

Take care. Chat with ya soon,
Joanna

she dreams big! said...

You must be a special person to have made such a thoughtful and loving friend! A friend who knows so well what we need to get us through the icky parts of life. I'm glad to have met you!

jeanne said...

Gosh Jan, it has been an age since I last visited you. I am sorry because I truly do love you and your posts. I have been really busy and visiting has been touch and go. I just have to admit I neglected many of my blogging friends.

I was so saddened about your dear Ben. I have been through it three times and is is a very hard thing to do. We now have a new puppy that we adore. It is good medicine.

How wonderful to receive flowers and candy from a dear friend when you are going through a loss that makes you sad. Lucky you to have such a caring friend. Good for her because she has you for a friend. Smile.

Congrats to your giveaway winner. It is good that it makes you move on and be happy about it.

All is well here but this year started off with more than I could imagine it could be. I lost a cousin and an Uncle but life just keeps going on in spite of our daily trials and tribulations. That's just life and I do love mine.

Blessings and love to you Jan.
Jeanne

Pretty Things said...

People can be so amazing!

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