the guilt of being me

I went to spend a few hours with Cherise yesterday. I stopped for lunch with Candace, we went to the pub where we worked together, the kindling that started our friendship fire. I hadn’t been there in YEARS… it was comfortable and weird all at the same time. She is expecting her second child in a few weeks, and is the most beautiful pregnant woman! 🙂 After lunch I headed up to see Goldy in the hospital, as he is still stuck in there. I feel for him, hospitals are not nice places, and I think He’s going stir crazy, the cold dark smelly hospital on top of being a couple hours from home and in pain… We had a quick visit, going outside for a few minutes, I felt good that he got out of his room for a while, and as always I enjoyed my time spent, even a frustrated, drugged up Goldy is lovely to be around. Cherise, Mia and I went to the beach, picked up a couple things at Natures fare, and hit safeway for some dinner. We visited and played until it was bed time for Mia. I don’t know what I would do without Cherise… probably just sit and rock somewhere in a padded room…
I headed up to the hospital to visit for a while longer before heading home. I had a lovely chat with a girl I went to high school with in the parking lot, and headed up to the room. I have spent countless hours in that hospital, on that floor… I was born in that hospital, My grandmother spent months in that ward, my grandfather spent months in the same ward 15 years later. I was always one to go visit people in the hospital, friends having surgeries, broken bones, cancer, babies, I would be there. I really feel quite at home, maybe because my grandparents spent so much time in care. I rounded the nurses station and Goldys regular nurse smiled and waved. I strolled into the room and said hello. He was laying there eyes closed, because of nausea, he will have his eyes closed, but still be awake. I put down my bag and sat on bed, no movement, earlier that day he really wasn’t feeling great, so I didn’t want to wake him. I rummaged thru my bag and considered what I would do. I had a book, and my ipad, I could have blogged or read. But actually felt like sitting in a hospital room while he slept was a little creepy. I mean, I’m not his mother, or his wife… we are friends. I need to be better aware of healthy boundaries for the people I care for. Selfishly I wanted his attention, but compassionately I want him to heal and feel better. I had already seen him… I was torn, I wanted to stay, but I felt odd about it. I am not his mother, or his wife… I walked over to the nurses station and grabbed a sheet of paper. I wrote him a note, leaving it beside the bed, paused at the door, he was still sound asleep, and I left. I felt awful. I was thinking, watch… he will wake up in 10 minutes and I’ll miss the visit. But… who knows, maybe he will sleep for hours and I’ll be the weirdo sitting in his room watching him sleep (kinda… I would have been working on things…) I almost cried when I got to my car… likely because of the hormones I started sunday, but partially because of guilt. I felt like, I said I would come visit, I was a bad friend for not following thru. There is no evidence to support this claim as true.
He didn’t see my note till nearly 11 at night. I was plagued with guilt. I don’t know when he did wake up, but I felt like I had stood him up. How do people do that? Not show up for plans? My goodness I would have a bleeding ulcer… I was still feeling guilty this afternoon, and talked to my therapist about it. Un-warranted guilt. I was respectful of my own personal boundaries for friendship, respectful of his health and well being, and aware of looking out for my own best interests first. This is progress, something I should be proud of, not guilty about. If the roles were reversed I wouldn’t expect someone to sit with me while I slept. I know if I hadn’t been sleeping well at night, (like he has) I wouldn’t want to be woken.
I need to let it go. I will continue to have issue, because putting myself first is something I am out of practice doing. I will feel guilty and need to analyze my thought pattern to see if it is warranted. I cannot continue to beat myself up. Because I am a good friend, and I will go visit you in the hospital! Just not going to lurk in the corner and watch you sleep… it does sound creepy…
I have an appointment in a month to see my therapist again, and I have some homework, I need to identify a trigger for my over-giving. The point where I feel like I am insecure and need to win people over, or if there is an event that snaps me into the giving? There needs to be a balance, I also need to let people reciprocate. It feels good to do nice things for people, why would I deprive my loved ones of doing for me? Not expecting reciprocation, but accepting. I’ll get there…

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